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Alzheimer's disease facts
Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a slowly progressive disease of the brain that is characterized by
symptoms like impairment of memory and eventually by disturbances in reasoning, planning, language, and perception.
Alzheimer's disease is by far the most common cause for dementia in the United States and in most countries in the world.
The likelihood of having Alzheimer's disease increases substantially after the age of 70, and
it may affect around 50% of persons over the age of 85.
The main risk factor for Alzheimer's disease is increased age. There are also genetic
and other risk factors.
Characteristic symptoms and stages of Alzheimer disease include
problems with performing familiar tasks,
difficulty writing or speaking,
loss of orientation to time and place,
losing or misplacing items,
mood or behavior changes,
loss of interest in daily activities, and
Symptoms may be present in varying degrees of severity.
The cause(s) of Alzheimer's disease is (are) not known. Although, accumulation of the protein amyloid in the brain is suspected to play a role.
The diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease should be based on a comprehensive examination that rules out other causes of dementia.
There are numerous causes of dementia, so having the characteristic symptoms do not necessarily mean that a person has Alzheimer disease.
The treatment and management of Alzheimer's disease consists of medications and non-medication based treatments.