It is the type of dementia which is irreversible and progressive disease that slowly destroy memory and thinking skills of a person and eventually the ability to carry out the simple task. Although, this disease has been described at every stage of adult life, but majority are in 60’s or older. Prevalence of this disease is higher in females. The survival of patients with this disease is reduced to half of the expected rate because of CV and respiratory causes.
HISTORY— Alzheimer disease is named after DR. alois Alzheimer. In the year 1906 Dr alois noticed certain changes in the brain tissues of a woman who died of some unusual mental illness. Her main symptoms are memory loss, language problem and unpredictable behavior After she died he examined her brain and found some abnormal clumps called as amyloid plaques and tangled bundles of fibers called as neuro fibillary tangles. In the brain these are the main feature of disease and third is loss of connection between neurons in the brain.
RISK FACTORS— The important risk factors are–
a) AGE- Increase in age is the greatest known risk factor for Alzheimer disease. This disease is not a part of normal ageing, but risk increases after age of 65 years and risk reaches up to 50% after age of 85 years.
b) FAMILY HISTORY- Another strong risk factor is family history. This disease is somewhat higher if first degree relative like parents or siblings. Sometime rare changes called mutations in three genes virtually generate person with Alzheimer disease.
c) SEX- Women are more likely to develop Alzheimer disease than men.
d) PAST HEAD TRAUMA- People who had severe head trauma appear to have greater risk of Alzheimer disease.
e) LIFESTYLE- some factors of heart disease increase the chance of Alzheimer disease like lack of exercise, smoking, high BP, poor diabetes.
STAGES OF ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE There are different stages of this disease ..
1) STAGE I NORMAL– In this stage the person is free of any symptoms of cognition and functional decline. we call this stage as normal.
2) STAGE II NORMAL AGED FORGETFULNESS– Half people over 65 years of age experience some complaints of cognition and functional problem . With these symptoms people believe they can no longer recall names as they could be 5 or 6 years previously. They can no longer recall when they placed things. Some experienced difficulties in concentration.
3) STAGE III MILD COGNITIVE IMPAIRMENT– during this stage deficits are mainly noted by person who are closely associated with the subjective. These person repeat questions. Their capacity to perform executive function become compromised. They are unable to master new computer skills.
4) STAGE IV MILD ALZHEIMER DISEASE– The most important deficit in these patient is their decreased ability to manage instrumental or complex activities of daily living. The main duration of this stage is 2 years . Impairment symptoms become evident during this stage.
5) STAGE V MODERATE ALZHEIMER DISEASE– In this stage the functional deficits are so evident that their survival is little bit dependent. The mean duration of this stage is 1.5 years.
6) STAGE VI MODERATE SEVERE ALZHEIMER DISEASE– During this stage patient is not able to do daily activities.