William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR
Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.
- Alzheimer's disease facts
- What is Alzheimer's disease?
- What's the difference between Alzheimer's disease and dementia?
- Who develops Alzheimer's disease?
- What are the symptoms of Alzheimer's disease?
- Ten warning signs of Alzheimer's disease
- What causes Alzheimer's disease?
- What are risk factors for Alzheimer's disease?
- How is the diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease made?
- What treatment and management options are available for Alzheimer's disease?
- Cholinesterase inhibitors (ChEIs)
- Partial glutamate antagonists
- Non-drug based treatments
- Treatment of psychiatric symptoms
- What is the prognosis for a person with Alzheimer's disease?
- Caring for the caregiver and Alzheimer's disease resources
- Alzheimer's Disease FAQs
- Find a local Geriatrician in your town
Alzheimer's disease facts
- Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a slowly progressive disease of the brain that is characterized by impairment of memory and eventually by disturbances in reasoning, planning, language, and perception.
- Alzheimer's disease is by far the most common cause for dementia in the United States and in most countries in the world.
- The likelihood of having Alzheimer's disease increases substantially after the age of 70 and may affect around 50% of persons over the age of 85.
- The main risk factor for Alzheimer's disease is increased age. There are also genetic risk factors and others.
There are 10 classic warning signs of Alzheimer's disease are
- memory loss,
- difficulty performing familiar tasks,
- problems with speaking with others or writing,
- disorientation to time and place,
- poor or decreased judgment,
- problems judging distances or vision problems,
- problems planning or solving problems,
- misplacing things,
- changes in mood, behavior, or personality, and
- loss of initiative or interest in hobbies, social activities, etc.
- The cause(s) of Alzheimer's disease is (are) not known. Although, accumulation of the protein amyloid in the brain is suspected to play a role.
- Alzheimer's disease is diagnosed when;
- a person has sufficient cognitive decline to meet criteria for dementia;
- the clinical course is consistent with that of Alzheimer's disease;
- no other brain diseases or other processes are better explanations for the dementia.
- Many other causes of dementia are screened for prior to diagnosing Alzheimer's disease.
- The management of Alzheimer's disease consists of medication based and non-medication based treatments.
What is Alzheimer's disease?
Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a slowly progressive disease of the brain that is characterized by impairment of memory and eventually by disturbances in reasoning, planning, language, and perception. Many scientists believe that Alzheimer's disease results from an increase in the production or accumulation of a specific protein (beta-amyloid protein) in the brain that leads to nerve cell death.
The likelihood of having Alzheimer's disease increases substantially after the age of 70 and may affect around 50% of persons over the age of 85. Nonetheless, Alzheimer's disease is not a normal part of aging and is not something that inevitably happens in later life. For example, many people live to over 100 years of age and never develop Alzheimer's disease.
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