Dementia of the Alzheimer's Type
Also Known as Alzheimer's Disease
The development of multiple cognitive deficits manifested by both:
- memory impairment (impaired ability to learn new information or to
recall previously learned information)
- one (or more) of the following cognitive disturbances:
- aphasia (language disturbance)
- apraxia (impaired ability to carry out motor activities
despite intact motor function)
- agnosia (failure to recognize or identify objects despite
intact sensory function)
- disturbance in executive functioning (i.e., planning,
organizing, sequencing, abstracting)
The cognitive deficits above each cause significant
impairment in social or occupational functioning and represent a
significant decline from a previous level of functioning.
The course is characterized by gradual onset and continuing cognitive
decline. The deficits do not occur exclusively during the course of a delirium.
The cognitive deficits above are not due to any of the following:
- other central nervous system conditions that cause progressive
deficits in memory and cognition (e.g., cerebrovascular disease,
Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, subdural hematoma,
normal-pressure hydrocephalus, brain tumor)
- systemic conditions that are known to cause dementia (e.g.,
hypothyroidism, vitamin B-12 or folic acid deficiency, niacin
deficiency, hypercalcemia, neurosyphilis, HIV infection)
- substance-induced conditions
Alzheimer's Online Resources
Including educational, support groups and caregiver resources.
« Disorders Index
By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on
11 Feb 2013
Published on PsychCentral.com. All rights reserved.
People are like stained-glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light from within.
-- Elizabeth Kubler-Ross