Alzheimer’s Disease Essay

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Alzheimer’s disease defined:
Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a progressive, terminal, degenerative brain disease. It is the fourth leading cause of death in adults and currently affects over four million people in the United States. This number is expected to increase over the next several years as the baby boomers age, until it reaches fourteen million by the year 2025.
Alzheimer disease generally occurs in people over seventy five years of age; however it does strike people in their forties, fifties, and sixties, but this is rare. When Alzheimer’s disease occurs prior to the age of sixty five, it is referred to as early onset Alzheimer’s.
The major symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease are:
Forgetfulness
Confusion
Dementia in the later
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Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia
The term Alzheimer’s disease is often used interchangeably with the term dementia. In actually , these terms are not interchangeable. Dementia is only a symptom of Alzheimer’s disease, and it occurs only in the mid to late stages of the disease process. Approximately seventy other diseases also have dementia as a symptom.
Delirium and depression can co-exist with Alzheimer’s disease, and can be treated, but often overlooked in the person with Alzheimer’s disease.
Delirium:
Delirium produces confusion and disorientation, but in contrast to the dementia seen in Alzheimer’s disease, it produces a clouding of consciousness. It has a rapid onset, and is of limited duration. It is caused by a medical condition such as infection. Delirium requires prompt medical evaluation and treatment of the medical cause.
Depression:
Depression can also produce symptoms common to alzheimer’s disease such as: forgetfulness, difficulty making decisions, withdrawal, poor judgment and irritable mood. A person with Alzheimer’s disease with and identified and treated depression can show a rapid and marked improvement in their level of functioning. It is a double burden for the person with Alzheimer’s disease and untreated depression.
Dementia :
Dementia is the major symptom as Alzheimer’s disease progresses through stages 5-7. Dementia involves multiple cognitive thinking impairement. The primary loss is being

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