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Chapter 19 - Preventing Cognitive Decline and Dementia

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  30 November 2019

Kenneth M. Heilman
Affiliation:
University of Florida
Stephen E. Nadeau
Affiliation:
University of Florida
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Summary

Early diagnosis and treatment, delay of progression, and prevention of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) are all interrelated and are targets for pharmaceutical and behavioral interventions. Depending on their mechanisms, medications directed at treatment or aimed at slowing the progression of disease may be candidates for disease prevention as well. As we have learned more about AD over the past two decades, experienced clinicians have become increasingly skilled at diagnosing AD earlier in the course of this disease and on the basis of milder symptoms. An isolated symptom of memory loss, termed mild cognitive impairment (MCI), appears to be one of the most common initial presentations of AD. Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) analysis, neuroimaging, and blood biomarkers hold promise for improving diagnostic certainty even in cases with mild cognitive symptoms. Researchers worldwide are seeking to identify treatments or changes in lifestyle (e.g., diet, exercise, and mental activity) that would decrease the risk of developing AD.

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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2019

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