Wednesday, May 7, 2014

What is Alzheimer's?

Alzheimer’s: The Final Frontier?
Alzheimer’s disease, or otherwise known as senile dementia of the Alzheimer’s type (SDAT), is growing fast to become one of the premier neurological diseases we will be facing in the coming years.  SDAT is a disease that ravages the brain, moving from location to location systematically destroying the nerve cells. It causes slow, steady deterioration of the cognitive functions and motor skills of the persons inflicted (Callone).  This deterioration, marked in the beginning stages with short term memory loss, causes the patient to become agitated, confused, and progressively unable to remain in what most would call “reality” (Long)
 I will be discussing the progression of the disease, and how a patient’s reality may shift to accommodate the alterations. I would also like to speak to the reality of not only the subject, but the family, caregivers and friends by exploring the accepted forms of psychological treatment.  We will discuss the effects of it on the patient and others involved.

    By the year 2050 there is an expected 15 million Americans that will be inflicted by this disease if we are unable to find an effective cure. This number represents a 3 fold rise in the current numbers, with two thirds of the population being represented by women (Alzheimer's Assosiation).

The substantial rise in number of cases is due to the longer life expectancy we are experiencing as time goes on. With the advancements in modern medicine we are living longer, and with that responsibility comes many new challenges in regard to our physical health. The “reality” for many American’s may be altered in greater numbers than ever anticipated.

So what is Alzheimer’s disease (SDAT)? SDAT is a disease that mostly affects persons over the age of 65, and moves in stages while slowly killing nerve cells, the first stage being in the cerebral hemisphere of the hippocampus.
The hippocampus is the area of the brain where our memories are stored, which is the reason why memory loss is the first symptom of illness.  Because of this progression being a targeted one, you may not notice anything odd other than a little forgetfulness, body functioning remains normal (Callone).

1 comment:

  1. Ok, a nice intro, but a couple of notes: I wish there was a way to pin the posts in order, since it seems like they really are meant to go in order, but not in the order in which they appear posted or archived. And also, I wish that you oriented this intro a bit more so that it set this up as a site that is really interested in hyperreality issues. It really starts out so conventionally, that it seems like any other help site about he disease, but I think it might be more compelling if you really explain up front how your work is different from other (better established) Alzheimer's bloggers.