Navigation Links
Drop in Certain Visual Skills May Precede Alzheimer's

Decline in spatial understanding can occur 3 years before diagnosis, study finds

MONDAY, Oct. 12 (HealthDay News) -- The ability to perceive relationships between objects (visuospatial skills) may decline years before a person is diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease, a new study suggests.

It included 444 people who were dementia-free when they were enrolled in the study and underwent tests on a number of cognitive abilities, including visuospatial skills. The assessments were repeated at least once before the end of the study. After an average follow-up of 5.9 years, 134 participants had developed dementia. Of those, 44 underwent brain autopsies that confirmed they had Alzheimer's disease.

The researchers used data from the cognitive assessments to chart declines in various areas before participants were diagnosed with dementia. They found an inflection point (sudden change to a steeper slope of decline) in visuospatial abilities three years before clinical diagnosis of dementia.

Declines in overall cognition occurred the next year, while inflection points for verbal and working memory weren't seen until one year before diagnosis.

The findings appear in the October issue of the Archives of Neurology.

"There are several implications of this study," wrote David K. Johnson, of the University of Kansas, and colleagues. "Some of the earliest signs of preclinical disease may occur on tests of visuospatial and speeded psychomotor skills. Furthermore, the greatest rate of preclinical decline may occur on executive and attention tasks. These findings suggest that research into early detection of cognitive disorders using only episodic memory tasks, such as word lists or paragraph recall, may not be sensitive to either all of the earliest manifestations of disease or the most rapidly changing domain."

"In summary, converging longitudinal evidence suggests that after a sharp departure from the relatively flat course of normal aging, there is a preclinical period in Alzheimer's disease with insufficient cognitive decline to warrant clinical diagnosis using conventional criteria but that can be seen with longitudinal data from multiple domains of cognition and not just memory."

More information

The U.S. National Institute on Aging has more about Alzheimer's disease.

-- Robert Preidt

SOURCE: JAMA/Archives journals, news release, Oct. 12, 2009

Copyright©2009 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Certain Types of Infertility Are Preventable
2. Photodynamic therapy effective for certain head and neck cancers
3. Uncertainty Surrounds Testing for Alzheimers
4. Survey finds just 40 percent of adults absolutely certain they will get H1N1 vaccine
5. Certain cancers more common among HIV patients than non-HIV patients
6. H1N1 Swine Flu Preparedness Uncertainty Results in Higher Business Disruption Risk
7. Trauma 411: Prolonged surgery should be avoided in certain cases
8. Pain Level May Predict Survival in Certain Cancer Patients
9. Bayer Statement on U.S. Food and Drug Administration Advice for Patients: Serious Errors with Certain Blood Glucose Monitoring Test Strips
10. Taking dex can improve high altitude exercise capacity in certain climbers
11. Certain Arthritis, Crohns Drugs May Raise Kids Cancer Risk: FDA
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... “While riding the bus, I ... Bronx, N.Y. “I thought there had to be a convenient and comfortable way to ... The PROTECTOR enables disabled individuals to safely travel during cold or inclement weather. In ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... , ... November 25, 2015 , ... ... (PHA) announces the nation’s Periwinkle Pioneers, individuals and groups responsible for advancing care ... disease. The Periwinkle Pioneers, nominated by the public, will receive special recognition throughout ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... ... philanthropic seniors, is resulting in a way for homeless people to have a ... have launched a new initiative whereby they are repurposing plastic bags into sleeping ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... Since its launch in 2012, ... adult stem cell therapies to patients with chronic degenerative medical conditions. Now, the ... Registered Trademark (RTM). , Organizations are required to hold a registered trademark in ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... Genesis Chiropractic Software ... software creates an agreement between the practice owner and the patient that automatically ... notification, and projections. Click here to learn more. , ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/24/2015)... FRANCISCO , Nov. 24, 2015  Thanks to ... Dignity Health St. Mary,s Medical Center,s Sister Diane Grassilli ... breast imaging capabilities in San Francisco ... an anonymous friend, stepped forward with a gift of ... for Breast Digital Mammography with Tomosynthesis and Whole Breast ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... Colo. , Nov. 24, 2015  Array ... that its Chief Executive Officer, Ron Squarer ... Healthcare Conference in New York.  The public is ... webcast on the Array BioPharma website.Event:Piper Jaffray Annual ... , Wednesday, December 2, 2015Time:1:30 p.m. Eastern Time ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... HOUSTON, TX and VANCOUVER, Nov. 24, 2015 /PRNewswire/ ... EPI; NASDAQ: EPIX ) announced today that the ... clinical study of EPI-506 as a treatment for metastatic ... States and Canada.  --> ... --> In the Phase 1/2 clinical trial, ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: