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Average Age Alzheimer’s Onset

Types Of Alzheimer’s Disease

Into the Fog: Living with Early-Onset Alzheimer’s | WebMD

Nearly everyone with Alzheimerâs disease will eventually have the same symptoms — memory loss, confusion, trouble with once-familiar tasks, and making decisions. While the manner of the disease development remains unclear, all forms of Alzheimer’s appear to share overproduction and/or decreased clearance of a type of protein called amyloid beta peptides. Though the effects of the disease are similar, there are two main types.

Familial Alzheimer’s disease is a form of Alzheimer’s disease that doctors know for certain is linked to genes. In families that are affected, members of at least two generations have had the disease. FAD makes up less than 1% of all cases of Alzheimer’s. Most people who have early onset Alzheimer‘s have FAD.

Wiesje M Van Der Flier

4 Alzheimer Center, Department of Neurology, Neuroscience Campus Amsterdam, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

7 Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics, Neuroscience Campus Amsterdam, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, the Netherlands

What To Do If You Suspect Alzheimers Disease

Getting checked by your healthcare provider can help determine if the symptoms you are experiencing are related to Alzheimers disease, or a more treatable conditions such as a vitamin deficiency or a side effect from medication. Early and accurate diagnosis also provides opportunities for you and your family to consider financial planning, develop advance directives, enroll in clinical trials, and anticipate care needs.

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Memory Loss That Impedes Daily Activities

The most noticeable symptom of Alzheimers disease is often memory loss . A person may start forgetting messages or recent events in a way that is unusual for them. They may repeat questions, having forgotten either the answer or the fact that they already asked.

It is not uncommon for people to forget things as they get older, but with early onset Alzheimers disease, this happens earlier in life, occurs more often, and seems out of character.

How Much Time Can Treatment Add

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Treatment will not prevent the progression of AD. It is also unclear if treatment can add time to a persons life. Ultimately, AD will progress and take its toll on the brain and body. As it progresses, symptoms and side effects will get worse.

However, a few medications may be able to slow the progression of AD at least for a short time. Treatment can also improve your quality of life and help treat symptoms. Talk with your doctor about your treatment options.

study identified several factors that affect a persons life expectancy. These include:

  • Gender: A 2004 study found that men lived an average of 4.2 years after their initial diagnosis. Women were found to live an average of 5.7 years after their diagnosis.
  • Severity of symptoms: People with significant motor impairment, such as a history of falls and a tendency to wander or walk away, had shorter life expectancies.
  • Brain abnormalities: The study also detected a connection between brain and spinal cord abnormalities and the length of life.
  • Other health problems: People with heart disease, a history of heart attack, or diabetes had shorter lifespans than patients without these complicating health factors.

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Women Might Be At Higher Risk

Age is the major risk factor for Alzheimers disease, and women on average live longer than men.

However, longevity alone does not fully explain why two-thirds of Alzheimers patients are women. Even after taking into account the difference in longevity, some studies have suggested that women are still at a higher risk.

Sociodemographics And Clinical Characteristics

Age, gender, living alone , and migrant status at the time of dementia diagnosis were derived from the national population registry managed by Statistics Netherlands. Migrant status was categorized into non-Western migration background and Western background .

The use of care at home at any point during 2008 to 2014 was derived from a national registry from the Dutch Central Administration Office made available for research by Statistics Netherlands. From 2011, use of day care was also recorded.

Polypharmacy was defined as the dispensing of 5 or more drugs and hyperpolypharmacy as the dispensing of 10 or more drugs from different chemical subgroups in the year of dementia diagnosis. Data were derived from a nationwide database from the National Healthcare Institute and made available for research by Statistics Netherlands and contained all medicines dispensed by pharmacies for which the costs are reimbursed under the statutory basic medical insurance. This covers medicines for community-dwelling people and for people living in residential care homes, but not medicines dispensed in hospitals and nursing homes. The database does not include over-the-counter medicines.

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Circumstances And Societal Engagement In Yopd And Implications For Management

In general, people with YOPD tend to have different family and societal engagements to those with late-onset PD. For example, most people diagnosed with YOPD will have a job, whereas some people with late-onset PD have already retired. Additionaly, it is not unusual that people with YOPD have young children , or may want to start a family.

What Are The Benefits Of An Early Alzheimer’s Diagnosis

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Alzheimers disease slowly worsens over time. People living with this disease progress at different rates, from mild Alzheimers, when they first notice symptoms, to severe, when they are completely dependent on others for care.

Early, accurate diagnosis is beneficial for several reasons. While there is no cure, there are several medicines available to treat Alzheimers, along with coping strategies to manage behavioral symptoms. Beginning treatment early in the disease process may help preserve daily functioning for some time. Most medicines work best for people in the early or middle stages of the disease. Learn more about Alzheimers medications.

In addition, having an early diagnosis helps people with Alzheimers and their families:

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What Is Known About Alzheimers Disease

Scientists do not yet fully understand what causes Alzheimers disease. There likely is not a single cause but rather several factors that can affect each person differently.

  • Age is the best known risk factor for Alzheimers disease.
  • Family historyresearchers believe that genetics may play a role in developing Alzheimers disease. However, genes do not equal destiny. A healthy lifestyle may help reduce your risk of developing Alzheimers disease. Two large, long term studies indicate that adequate physical activity, a nutritious diet, limited alcohol consumption, and not smoking may help people. To learn more about the study, you can listen to a short podcast.
  • Changes in the brain can begin years before the first symptoms appear.
  • Researchers are studying whether education, diet, and environment play a role in developing Alzheimers disease.
  • There is growing scientific evidence that healthy behaviors, which have been shown to prevent cancer, diabetes, and heart disease, may also reduce risk for subjective cognitive decline. Heres 8 ways.

Life Expectancy By Stage Of The Disease

The average number of years a person lives with Alzheimers disease is about 10. Keep in mind, however, that theres a gap between when symptoms begin and when a diagnosis is actually sought. The first symptoms of Alzheimers diseaseforgetting names, misplacing items, difficulty concentrating at work or performing simple tasksarrive an average of almost three years before the diagnosis is made.

The scale most commonly used by health professionals for the stages of dementia is the Global Deterioration Scale , also called the Reisberg Scale. The table below shows a patients average life expectancy by the stage of dementia. These are averages based on studies of large numbers of Alzheimers patients.

Life Expectancy By Stage of Alzheimers / Dementia
Stage
Stage 7: Very Severe Cognitive Decline 1.5 to 2.5 years 2.5 years or less

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Evidence That Life Expectancy Calculators For Dementia Actually Work

It turns out that the length of time a person has before needing full-time care, before moving into a care community, and before dying can all be predicted somewhat accurately. This information, though not definitive, can help families get a general understanding of how to plan for the future and what to expect as the disease progresses.

In a study conducted at the department of neurology in Columbia University, groups of people with mild Alzheimers were followed for 10 years and assessed semiannually. Data from these assessments were plugged into a complicated algorithm. The people studied were tested for the following:

Mental status score Cognition and function Motor skills Psychology and behavior Basic demographic information

Other experiments have yielded similar results. A University of Kentucky study analyzed the records of more than 1,200 people with dementia and found that it was possible to accurately predict their life expectancy. Researchers looked at many variables including family history and medical problems like high blood pressure and heart disease, and ultimately realized it came down to three things:

age when the first symptoms appeared gender how impaired someone was when diagnosis was first made

Symptoms Of Mild Cognitive Impairment

Early onset dementia and Alzheimers are affecting younger adults, new ...

Some people have a condition called mild cognitive impairment, or MCI. It can be an early sign of Alzheimers. But, not everyone with MCI will develop Alzheimers disease. People with MCI can still take care of themselves and do their normal activities. MCI memory problems may include:

  • Losing things often
  • Forgetting to go to events or appointments
  • Having more trouble coming up with words than other people the same age

Learn more about Alzheimer’s disease from MedlinePlus.

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What Are The Risk Factors For Parkinsons Disease

Risk factors for Parkinsons disease include:

Genetics

People with a first-degree relative with Parkinsons are at an increased risk for the disease possibly as much as 9 percent greater.

Fifteen to 25 percent of people with Parkinsons have a known relative with the disease, but a condition called familial Parkinsons, which has a known genetic link, is relatively rare.

The average age of onset is 60 years, and the incidence rises with advancing age. About 10 percent of people have early-onset or young-onset disease, which begins before age 50.

Gender

Parkinsons affects about 50 percent more men than women, for unknown reasons.

Pesticide Exposure

Exposure to some pesticides has been shown to raise the risk of developing Parkinsons.

Problematic chemicals include organochlorine pesticides like DDT, dieldrin, and chlordane. Rotenone and permethrin have also been implicated.

Fungicide and Herbicide Exposure

Exposure to the fungicide maneb or the herbicides 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid , paraquat, or Agent Orange may raise the risk of Parkinsons.

The U.S. Veterans Health Administration considers Parkinsons to be a possible service-related illness if the person was exposed to significant amounts of Agent Orange.

Head Injuries

Head injuries may contribute to the development of Parkinsons in some people.

Coffee and Smoking

People who drink coffee or smoke tobacco have been found to have a lower risk of Parkinsons disease, for reasons that remain unclear.

Icipating In Alzheimer’s Disease Clinical Trials

Everybody those with Alzheimers disease or MCI as well as healthy volunteers with or without a family history of Alzheimers may be able to take part in clinical trials and studies. Participants in Alzheimers clinical research help scientists learn how the brain changes in healthy aging and in Alzheimers. Currently, at least 270,000 volunteers are needed to participate in more than 250 active clinical trials and studies that are testing ways to understand, diagnose, treat, and prevent Alzheimers disease.

Volunteering for a clinical trial is one way to help in the fight against Alzheimers. Studies need participants of different ages, sexes, races, and ethnicities to ensure that results are meaningful for many people. To learn more about clinical trials, watch this video from NIH’s National Library of Medicine.

NIA leads the federal governments research efforts on Alzheimers. NIA-supported Alzheimers Disease Research Centers throughout the U.S. conduct a wide range of research, including studies of the causes, diagnosis, and management of the disease. NIA also sponsors the Alzheimers Clinical Trials Consortium, which is designed to accelerate and expand studies and therapies in Alzheimers and related dementias.

To learn more about Alzheimers clinical trials and studies:

  • Talk to your health care provider about local studies that may be right for you.

Watch videos of participants in Alzheimers disease clinical trials talking about their experiences.

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Genetic Testing For Late

Having the APOE4 gene doesn’t affect treatment or disease course at all, it’s just a genetic marker for risk.

If you have been tested already and have been found to have APOE4, talk with your doctor about possibly participating in a research study or clinical trial, to assist researchers in finding out more about this gene, brain changes associated with the gene, and treatment effectiveness.

Many people with late-onset Alzheimer’s disease may not even know they have the APOE4 gene since there are other ways of diagnosing the disease and late-onset is the norm for diagnosis. If you have late-onset Alzheimers disease and have a family history of Alzheimer’s, you might want to talk with your doctor about the possibility of a genetic risk component, and whether genetic testing would be useful or not.

At its heart, its important to realize that the APOE4 gene is merely another risk factor, not a potential cause.

What Are The Symptoms Of Early

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For most people with early-onset Alzheimer disease, the symptoms closely mirror those of other forms of Alzheimer disease.

Early symptoms:

  • Withdrawal from work and social situations

  • Changes in mood and personality

Later symptoms:

  • Severe mood swings and behavior changes

  • Deepening confusion about time, place, and life events

  • Suspicions about friends, family, or caregivers

  • Trouble speaking, swallowing, or walking

  • Severe memory loss

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Symptoms Of Parkinsons Disease

You can attribute the symptoms of Parkinsons to a deficiency of a chemical in your brain called dopamine. The four classic motor symptoms of Parkinsons include:

  • Shaking and tremors
  • Moving slowly, known as bradykinesia
  • Unusually rigid or stiff muscles in your face, neck, legs, or other muscles
  • Difficulty maintaining your balance
  • Shaking and tremors while you are resting is typically the first sign of Parkinsons disease, but about one-third of patients wont experience those symptoms. These symptoms tend to be worsened by emotional and physical stress. Sleep or moving can help reduce these issues.

    Parkinsons disease is both chronic and progressive with symptoms generally getting worse as time goes on. As it progresses, other disabilities can develop, including:

    • Difficulty talking and swallowing
    • A sudden inability to move,

    Some sufferers also have symptoms that dont affect their motor skills, including:

    • Mental health issues such as anxiety, depression and memory loss
    • Trouble sleeping, including thrashing and other sudden movements
    • Change in blood pressure

    What Are The Warning Signs Of Alzheimers Disease

    Watch this video Memory Loss is Not a Normal Part of Aging

    Alzheimers disease is not a normal part of aging. Memory problems are typically one of the first warning signs of Alzheimers disease and related dementias.

    In addition to memory problems, someone with symptoms of Alzheimers disease may experience one or more of the following:

    • Memory loss that disrupts daily life, such as getting lost in a familiar place or repeating questions.
    • Trouble handling money and paying bills.
    • Difficulty completing familiar tasks at home, at work or at leisure.
    • Misplacing things and being unable to retrace steps to find them.
    • Changes in mood, personality, or behavior.

    Even if you or someone you know has several or even most of these signs, it doesnt mean its Alzheimers disease. Know the 10 warning signs .

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    Medications To Treat The Underlying Alzheimer’s Disease Process

    Aducanumab is the first disease-modifying therapy approved by the FDA to treat Alzheimers disease. The medication helps to reduce amyloid deposits in the brain and may help slow the progression of Alzheimers, although it has not yet been shown to affect clinical outcomes such as progression of cognitive decline or dementia. A doctor or specialist will likely perform tests, such as a PET scan or analysis of cerebrospinal fluid, to look for evidence of amyloid plaques and help decide if the treatment is right for the patient.

    Aducanumab was approved through the FDAs Accelerated Approval Program. This process requires an additional study after approval to confirm the anticipated clinical benefit. If the follow-up trial fails to verify clinical benefit, the FDA may withdraw approval of the drug. Results of the phase 4 clinical trial for aducanumab are expected to be available by early 2030.

    Several other disease-modifying medications are being tested in people with mild cognitive impairment or early Alzheimers as potential treatments.

    Managing Alzheimer’s Disease Behavior

    Diagnoses of early

    Common behavioral symptoms of Alzheimers include sleeplessness, wandering, agitation, anxiety, and aggression. Scientists are learning why these symptoms occur and are studying new treatments drug and nondrug to manage them. Research has shown that treating behavioral symptoms can make people with Alzheimers more comfortable and makes things easier for caregivers.

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    Support For Families And Alzheimer’s Disease Caregivers

    Caring for a person with Alzheimers can have significant physical, emotional, and financial costs. The demands of day-to-day care, changes in family roles, and decisions about placement in a care facility can be difficult. NIA supports efforts to evaluate programs, strategies, approaches, and other research to improve the quality of care and life for those living with dementia and their caregivers.

    Becoming well-informed about the disease is one important long-term strategy. Programs that teach families about the various stages of Alzheimers and about ways to deal with difficult behaviors and other caregiving challenges can help.

    Good coping skills, a strong support network, and respite care are other things that may help caregivers handle the stress of caring for a loved one with Alzheimers. For example, staying physically active provides physical and emotional benefits.

    Some caregivers have found that joining a support group is a critical lifeline. These support groups enable caregivers to find respite, express concerns, share experiences, get tips, and receive emotional comfort. Many organizations sponsor in-person and online support groups, including groups for people with early-stage Alzheimers and their families.

    Read about this topic in Spanish. Lea sobre este tema en español.

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