Common diseases & risk factors

Avi Medical helps you with Alzheimer's disease

Alzheimer's dementia is an incurable, degenerative memory disorder that affects over one million people in Germany. However, although the disease is irreversible, a comprehensive therapy can slow down its course and alleviate the symptoms. Our experienced doctors will accompany you in this process at all our locations. 

What is Alzheimer's dementia?

With a share of over fifty percent, Alzheimer's dementia is the most common form of the symptom complex dementia. The clinical picture is characterised by a progressive memory disorder, which is marked by the loss of nerve tissue in the cerebrum. 

Amyloid plaque deposits in the organ are also typical. The result of these brain anomalies, which are still not fully understood, are cognitive impairments ranging from a loss of the ability to orient oneself to the unlearning of already learned skills

At what point is it Alzheimer's dementia?

For a reliable diagnosis of dementia, potentially affected persons must:

  • existing symptoms persist for at least six months
  • Disorders of higher cognitive abilities can be detected by laboratory techniques 
  • disorders of consciousness (e.g. delirium) must be excluded 
  • the sensory organs function as normally as possible 

For the specific diagnosis of Alzheimer's dementia, patients also show:

  • a memory disorder with a gradual onset
  • Problems with social interaction
  • Accumulation of certain proteins in the cerebrospinal fluid
  • Loss of brain mass in areas typical of Alzheimer's disease (especially the temporal lobe and hippocampus) visible on CT or MRI. 

What are the triggers of Alzheimer's dementia?

The triggers of Alzheimer's dementia have not yet been conclusively clarified. However, the disease is suspected to be triggered at this time:

  • Deposits of misfolded proteins in the brain (beta-amyloids)
  • genetic predisposition. Many affected people have relatives with Alzheimer's dementia. 

Good to know: While its triggers are unknown, there are proven protective factors that reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer's dementia. These include:

  • a high level of education
  • many close social contacts

What are possible symptoms of Alzheimer's dementia?

The accompanying symptoms of Alzheimer's dementia, which are also seen in other forms of dementia, include

  • Deterioration of memory and associated limitations in daily life. This includes, for example, problems with finding one's way or operating devices.
  • Disturbances in concentration and orientation (in time, place and later in one's own person). Affected persons forget, for example, where they are and, as the disease progresses, personal characteristics such as their own name or birthday.

Alzheimer's dementia is also characterised by a series of specific early and late symptoms. The former in particular are hardly noticeable at first, as those affected often consciously mask or compensate for them. 

Early symptoms include: 

  • mild depressions
  • Smelling problems
  • Decrease in motivation

Late symptomsinclude: 

  • Problems naming objects
  • Problems with reading, arithmetic and drawing
  • sudden stupor
  • Delusional symptoms up to and including hallucinations
  • Disturbances of the day-night rhythm
  • Incontinence

Treatment of Alzheimer's dementia at Avi Medical

The first step in the comprehensive treatment of Alzheimer's dementia is diagnosis. For us at Avi Medical, this includes:

  • The exclusion of a temporary memory problem (by taking a medical history and physical examinations).
  • Neurological examinations including memory test 
  • Blood test for vitamin deficiencies or inflammation 
  • If necessary, cerebrospinal fluid examination (cerebrospinal fluid puncture)
  • CT of the head (by a specialist)

This is followed by the targeted therapy of Alzheimer's dementia, which is intended to slow down its progressive course and alleviate the symptoms . This includes:

  • special training courses. Here, those affected and their relatives receive help and tips on how to preserve memory as well as guidelines on how to behave in disease-influenced everyday situations.
  • Non-medicinal therapies (occupational therapy, exercise therapy)
  • Medication options against cognitive decline (antidementia drugs) and accompanying symptoms (such as antidepressants against depression)