dementia

China, with one of the largest – if not the largest – elderly population on Earth, has a strong incentive to learn how to support or improve cognitive function for its older citizens. And as people all around the world live longer, understanding how to slow mental impairment and dementia has become an ever-growing concern.

That's in part what has led a multinational research team to look for ways to mitigate cognitive degeneration. And a new, interesting study focusing on post-lunchtime napping for the elderly is helping shed light on this important issue.

In their paper published today online in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, this group of Chinese and American researchers...

Now that winter has hit the northern hemisphere, our thoughts often focus on ways to keep warm. Well, not only can a nice, sweaty sauna do the trick, but according to a recent study repeated saunas may just help fend off dementia — at least for middle-aged men.

Dr. Tanjaniina Laukkanen from the University of Eastern Finland and colleagues followed the health of over 2300 middle-aged men (42-60 years old at baseline) for over 20 years. They analyzed possible associations between the frequency with which the men used saunas and the risk of their developing Alzheimer's disease or other types of dementia.

Sauna is a Finnish word that...

Identifying Brain Trauma

A small, yet promising, brain trauma study may someday lead to a time when doctors can forecast which patients who incurred concussions or repeated blows to the head will be at risk for future neurological problems.

The new study, released this week, has the potential to advance scientists' knowledge of brain injuries and expand the scope of work currently being done to include preventative measures for treating psychiatric issues and onset dementia before they surface. Currently, confirmation of brain damage stemming from concussions, blows and the like, a condition known as chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE, can only be diagnosed post-mortem.

For the study, which was conducted between 2015 and 2016, researchers at Johns Hopkins assembled two groups of men. The...

The prevalence of dementia in the United States significantly declined from 11.6% in 2000 to 8.8% in 2012.  A new study by JAMA Internal Medicine attributes this, in part, to an increase in educational attainment. 

Dementia has multiple causes and types.  It reflects damage to the nerve cells of the brain which can appear in varying locales.  Symptoms of memory loss and cognitive changes manifest differently depending on the individual, medical history and etiology.  

Alzheimer’s is the most common culprit in those 65 and older.  Right behind is vascular damage of the vessels that...

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In the fight against Alzheimer's, memory loss has kept its place as the frontrunner of early warning signs, but that may no longer hold true. Experts unveil that sharp changes in behavior and personality could indicate very early stages of frontotemporal dementia. They shared the findings and other themes at the annual...

PrilosecPrevacid_Shelf_optStudy results recently published in JAMA Neurology suggest that regular use of proton pump inhibitors could increase the risk of dementia among those who use them regularly and are 75 years of age or older.

The study was entitled "Association of Proton Pump Inhibitors With Risk of Dementia," and led by Britta Haenisch, PhD, and colleagues, of the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases in Bonn.

Proton...

NEJM & Frank Pampa, USA TODAY NEJM & Frank Pampa, USA TODAY

A study published just recently in the New England Journal of Medicine shows that the age-cohort-specific incidence of dementia has actually been in decline over the period from 1977 through 2008.

For quite a while now, experts have warned that Alzheimer s and other forms of...

PET ScanBy age 50 years, 10% of individuals with normal cognitive function are storing amyloid in their brain, and by age 90 years, 44% of individuals show evidence of amyloid beta (A-β). But, while this plaque deposition is often a harbinger of Alzheimer's disease (AD), patients have AD without amyloid, and amyloid deposition without dementia.

Moreover, people start to store amyloid in their brain decades before the onset of dementia, with individuals who possess the apolipoprotein E ε4 genotype (APOE-ε4) most vulnerable to amyloid aggregation.

These findings,...

Brain MRI-Alzheimer'sLast week we wrote about Jane Brody s New York Times article on solutions for cognitive decline. And this week, she covers cognitive decline once again, this time focusing on different tests for early signs of dementia.

According to research from the University of Michigan, more than half of older adults with signs of memory loss never get evaluated by a doctor. Although...

MRI-strokeA group led by the Mayo Clinic s Dr. Ronald Petersen developed a set of simple tests to try to get a reliable risk-predictor for cognitive decline, a harbinger of dementia. Their three-step methodology had a high rate of accuracy in predicting the onset of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) over the course of 5 years in a group of randomly selected older residents of Olmstead County, MD.

The Mayo group randomly selected almost 1,500 people in the vicinity of the Mayo Clinic, aged 70-89 years at the study s outset in 2004. All...