Alzheimer's Dementia Essay

2109 words - 9 pages

Alzheimer's Dementia
Alzheimer’s Dementia is one of the most common and well-known form of dementia. It is a progressive attack of the brain. There is no cure for dementia. Alzheimer’s is usually associated with the elderly. With new technology, the disease can be predicted years before symptoms begin. Genetic testing is one of the new technology utilized to diagnose Alzheimer’s. Due to this disease not having a cure, genetic counseling is required prior to testing, at time results of tests are reviewed, and afterwards if one is tested positive for the genes associated with this disorder.
General Information
Alzheimer’s dementia was officially discovered in 1907 by a researcher named ...view middle of the document...

Researchers are also exploring what effects environmental factors have on this disease as well. The number of individuals being diagnosed with the disease is steadily increasing. Research is being done to determine if gender and race have an effect on the risk of developing this disease.

Alzheimer’s Dementia is divided into early and late onset. Symptoms usually start 10 years after disease invades the body. The various onsets are caused by different genes being present. In early onset Alzheimer’s dementia two distinguished genes are found, presenilin 1 (PSEN1) is found in 20% to 70% of the cases while presenilin 2 (PSEN2) is found in less than 5% of all cases (Schutte, 2013). This is a rare gene. Amyloid precursor protein (APP) is another gene identified in 10% to 15% of the cases (Schutte, 2013). Researchers are finding similarities in the gene found in the late onset of Alzheimer’s and Down syndrome. In the late-onset of Alzheimer’s, the gene identified is apolipoprotein E (APOE) with a variant APOE – E4 that is found in younger individuals with Alzheimer’s Dementia (Jorde et al., 2014). Researchers just discovered these genes in the earlier 90’s and named them. Genetic research related to Alzheimer’s Dementia is relative new and studies continues.
Genetic Testing
Many times with genetic testing, individual have the tests completed and results given to them. However, with Alzheimer’s, genetic counseling is very important. If a parent has this disorder, it is high risk chance that one or more of their children will develop the disorder as well. There is no cure for Alzheimer’s Dementia. Researchers have no benefits for completing genetic testing on pediatrics for this disease.
Furthermore genetic counselors will only complete genetic testing for Alzheimer’s dementia if one agrees to genetic counseling. There is no cure for this disease. If the individual is asymptomatic, genetic testing is discouraged. Fear is that positive genetic testing will trigger psychological problems or issues (Goldman et al., 2011). However, other researchers argue that genetic testing with adults can be beneficial to the individual. Early diagnoses will lead to early treatment. It also gives the individual and family members an opportunity to make decisions regarding wishes, legal and financial matters
If the individual insists on having genetic testing, several recommendations are made. One of the first recommendation is that a complete neurological assessment to include diagnostic exams and a completed family history to establish a baseline (Goldman et al., 2011). A family history must be determined and if the person is currently having any symptoms this will be documented as well (Goldman et al., 2011). Once the physical exam is completed a psychological exam is recommended. Depending on recommendations, this will determine whether or not testing will be completed. If testing is done, a counselor is available during the disclosure of...

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