Thursday, October 28, 2010

Ten Warning Signs of Alzheimer’s Disease Revised by the Alzheimer’s Association

By Carole B. Larkin
Alzheimer's Reading Room

The Alzheimer’s Association of America has revised its 10 warning signs of Alzheimer’s disease.

In order to promote early detection and early diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease the Alzheimer’s Association of America has updated its list of the 10 warning signs of Alzheimer’s disease. The Association is doing this because early diagnosis and early intervention (read administration of Alzheimer’s drugs) provide the best opportunities for treatment, support and planning for the future.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Reading, Engaging, and Communicating with an Alzheimer's Patient (Podcast))

By Bob DeMarco

Take the extra step. Walk the extra yard. Engage. Keep on living. Don’t be afraid to try things. Do things that you have always done together. Don’t let anyone discourage you or get in your way.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Test Your Memory for Alzheimer's -- Self Assessment Tests

The five tests listed below are self assessment tests for Alzheimer's, dementia, and mild cognitive impairment.

If you decide to administer one or more of these tests and the results of the tests seem suspicious you should consult with your personal care physician or a neurologist for a more thorough memory examination and diagnosis.

#1 Test Your Memory for Alzheimer's Dementia in 15 Minutes (SAGE)

This is my number one recommendation for testing memory.

The latest weapon in the war against Alzheimer’s disease is not a fancy new brain scanner or a computer device. Instead, it’s a it a 15 question written exam that could have a dramatic impact on a major problem -- the early detection of Alzheimer's disease.

This handwritten self-assessment test can be taken in less than 15 minutes. SAGE is a reliable tool for evaluating memory and cognitive ability. Findings confirming the validity of the tool were reported in the journal Alzheimer Disease and Associated Disorders.

Go here to learn more about the Self-Administered Gerocognitive Examination (SAGE) including instructions, the test, and scoring system.

Also see:

#2 Alzheimer's Clock Draw Test

Drawing a clock by hand is one of several useful screening tools that can help to detect mild cognitive impairment, dementia, or Alzheimer's. This test can help you, or your doctor, differentiate between normal aging and possible dementia.

If you administer the test on your own and find the results either disconcerting or suspicious, schedule an appointment with your personal care physician. Take the copy of the clock test with you to the doctor appointment, and show the test to the doctor.

Go here for more on the clock draw test including scoring.

#3 Test Your Memory (TYM) for Alzheimer's or Dementia in Five Minutes

This test is designed for people that live in England. Results were published in the British Medical Journal (BMJ).

The TYM is a series of 10 tasks including ability to copy a sentence, semantic knowledge, calculation, verbal fluency and recall ability. The ability to do the test is also scored. Each task carries a score with a maximum score of 50 points available. The test is designed to use minimal operator time and to be suitable for non-specialist use.

Go here for the information and follow the links for the test, scoring and scientific study.

#4 The Mini-Cog Test for Alzheimer's and Dementia

The Mini-Cog is a simple three minute test that is useful in detecting mild cognitive impairment, dementia, or an early stage of Alzheimer's. The research study, included below, showed that the test has a high degree of accuracy (83 percent).

Go here for more information.

#5 Dr Oz Alzheimer's Memory Quiz (Test)

This memory quiz is based of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VAMC) St. Louis University Mental Status (SLUMS) examination and is an assessment tool for informational and entertainment purposes only.

Go here to take the test.

More About the Alzheimer's Reading Room

Original content Bob DeMarco, the Alzheimer's Reading Room

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Alzheimer's Caregiver Advice and Insight

By Bob DeMarco
Alzheimer's Reading Room

The Metamorphosis of This Alzheimer's Caregiver
The more I learned the more I wanted to know. I learned a great deal about Alzheimer's disease and dementia--including the science. It helped me understand a very mystifying disease. It helped me to put a frame around something that is difficult if not impossible to describe.

Communication in Alzheimer's World
Let's face it, dealing with dementia is not easy. Understanding Alzheimer's disease is not easy...

Alzheimer's World -- Two Circles Trying to Intersect
When Alzheimer's strikes communication and behavior change abruptly -- overnight. It is up to the caregiver to adjust since the person suffering from dementia is incapable of the adjustment. Understanding this need is the first big step.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

About the Alzheimer's Reading Room

On the Alzheimer's Reading Room, we discuss issues like: communication, wandering, incontinence, hygiene, patient symptoms, and what to expect as the disease progresses. We discuss all issues that are important to Alzheimer's caregivers. We provide specific insight, advice, and solutions based on real life experience.

At the Alzheimer's Reading Room, we discuss solutions to common problems that Alzheimer's caregivers face each day.

By Bob DeMarco
Alzheimer's Reading Room

I started the Alzheimer’s Reading Room to keep track of the thousands of articles and many books I was reading about Alzheimer's disease.

I soon realized that Alzheimer's caregivers are often thrust into their role with little or no experience, training, or education about Alzheimer's disease. As a result, they are often overwhelmed and suffer from feelings of helplessness. Forty percent of Alzheimer's caregivers suffer from depression.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Communicating in Alzheimer's World

Let's face it, dealing with Alzheimer's is not easy. Understanding Alzheimer's disease is not easy. Some people can't do it...ever...
By Bob DeMarco

It takes a lot of energy, learning, and patience to deal with the Alzheimer's disease.

In order to begin the process of dealing with communication in a world fill with Alzheimer's you first need to make a simple important decision -- you want to decrease both your stress as caregiver, and the stress of the person suffering from Alzheimer's.

Read that carefully, you want to reduce stress. You want to change the dynamic. You want to change for the better -- you want and need to change the way things are.

You might be wondering why I just repeated myself. Why? Because I believe it is necessary to get focused on what you want to accomplish, if you ever expect to accomplish it. It must become a deep and strong desire within you.