Some cases of dementia are caused by medical conditions that can be treated, fully or partly restoring mental function. When dementia cannot be reversed, the goal of treatment is to make life as easy as possible for the person and the caregivers.
At this time, there are no medications that can prevent or cure Alzheimer's disease or that will restore normal mental abilities. Medication may help some people function better by temporarily reducing memory loss and thinking problems.
Research into ways to test DNA (genes) to see if a person is likely to develop Alzheimer's disease is progressing rapidly. People who have a gene for apolipoprotein E-4 (ApoE-4) may be more likely to develop the disease,but the presence of the gene cannot predict for sure whether a person will develop Alzheimer's disease. Many people who have the ApoE-4 gene do not get Alzheimer's disease,and ...
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Doctors diagnose the cause of dementia by asking questions about the person's medical history and doing a physical exam, a mental status exam, and lab and imaging tests. Tests can help the doctor learn whether dementia is caused by a treatable condition.
A person's medical history and a physical exam are important parts of the evaluation when the person has symptoms of dementia or Alzheimer's disease.Medical historyThe doctor will ask questions during a medical history to assess a person's past and current overall health and to find out how well the person functions. This process may be complicated if the person isn't able to remember important parts of his or her medical history or isn't aware of the memory loss. A family member can be very helpful in providing information about the person's symptoms, such as when the symptoms were first noticed, how quickly they developed, and whether they have continued to get worse.Other important information in a medical history includes: Other medical problems the person has or has had, such as a stroke, Parkinson's disease, HIV infection, depression, a head injury, heart disease, or lipid disorders (problems with cholesterol levels). In some cases, illnesses can cause confusion or other signs