ALZHEIMER’S: FORGETTING AS A DISEASE
In Alzheimer’s, the brain slowly degrades – until complete mental deterioration.
Maybe you also have a grandpa or grandma whose memory is slowly declining gdpr diritto all oblio. Alzheimer’s is the name of the dreaded disease that is still not curable. It was named after its discoverer, the neurologist Alois Alzheimer.
Alois Alzheimer was a Bavarian neurologist who began studying brain diseases in the early 20th century. To this end, he examined and questioned patients very carefully during their lifetime and examined their brains closely under the microscope after their death.
In 1906 he discovered protein deposits and dead nerve cells in the brain of a deceased female patient who had previously forgotten the simplest things, dates and facts of her life. Auguste, as she was called, had forgotten her name, where she lived and whether she had been married.
CHANGES IN THE CEREBRAL CORTEX
Alzheimer found that large areas of the cerebral cortex, which enable memory, orientation and emotional life, were severely changed or even destroyed. The dead nerve cells and the protein deposits gave an explanation for the fact that this woman had died completely stupid.
However, his colleagues were hardly interested in his two scientific papers. The disease was not common in the past because people did not live as old as they do today. Only after Alois Alzheimer’s death was the disease named after Alzheimer’s and it became clear how groundbreaking and important his research was.
HOW ALZHEIMER’S MANIFESTS ITSELF:
The clinical picture is divided into different stages and is recognized relatively late. At first, the disease often begins slowly and insidiously with a slight forgetfulness. Those affected can no longer assess situations correctly and have problems finding their way in a city or even in their apartment. They forget where they put their things or that they need glasses to read.
There are also language disorders. Suddenly, suitable words or names can no longer be thought of, the patient can no longer speak properly and is increasingly absent-minded. Gradually, the affected person also feels these changes, becomes afraid, which increases more and more and which can also result in apparently unfounded aggression against others.
Then the patient begins to lose consciousness of himself more and more. The second stage occurs when the patient no longer recognizes his surroundings, not even his closest relatives and friends. He forgets who he is and where he lives, who he is with. He can no longer eat by himself or keep himself clean. Now the physical and mental decline is visible to all.
In the third stage the patient has only the intelligence of a newborn. Brain performance is slowly becoming weaker and a mental breakdown occurs that has so far been almost impossible to stop, because researchers have not yet found a way to stop or cure Alzheimer’s.
CHECKING BRAIN ACTIVITY
It is not easy to actually diagnose this disease early on. However, there are now tests and procedures that help to detect Alzheimer’s. Brain activity is also checked. Older people are particularly affected by Alzheimer’s. So the risk increases with age. And as people live longer on average, the number of people suffering from Alzheimer’s is also increasing. In the meantime, 20 million people worldwide are affected, in Germany there are more than 1.6 million known cases – and the trend is rising.
RELATIVES AND FRIENDS
Alzheimer’s usually occurs after the age of 65. But there are also cases with 40 years. The older a person gets, the higher the probability that they can develop cos’è diritto oblio.