Dementia Information

中卓醫務-香港疾病資訊
Disease Information

Disease Information

The elderly may experience both physical and psychological changes as they age. In addition to examinations, diagnosis and treatment, geriatrics also give suggestions for preventing diseases to promote their quality of life.

Dementia

What is dementia

Factors like Alzheimer's disease and stroke may cause pathological changes in brain neurons, which affect and gradually lower brain functions and ability of patients in memory, understanding, calculation and judgement. In Hong Kong, about 30% to 40% of the elderly at the age of 80 or above suffer from symptoms of dementia.

Impact on patients

Dementia reduces brain functions of the patient, leading to gradual loss of self-care ability, with effects divided into early, middle and late stages:

- Early stage: poor recent memory, weakened elaborative faculty, but self-care ability remains;

- Middle stage: emotional instability, day and night reversal, and need help from others for some complicated task in daily life;

- Late stage: failure in recognizing relatives, loss of speaking ability and incapacity to take care of themselves. 

Diagnosis of dementia

Clinical examination, cognitive test, blood test, brain positron emission tomography, brain magnetic resonance imaging, etc.

Treatment of dementia

No radical cure has yet to be discovered for dementia, but various treatments can slow down the memory loss and control emotional and behavioral problems, such as:

- Medication: slows down damage of brain cells and controls emotional problems;

- Non-pharmacological treatment: including reality orientation, cognitive training, multisensory stimulation, etc., to strengthen the remaining cognitive ability of the patient.