Because memory problems could be caused by a number of medical or stress-related conditions, it’s important to find out if early memory concerns are normal or not. Memory problems may also represent changes seen in early Alzheimer’s disease and there may be something more that can be done.
Current thinking in the field of Alzheimer’s disease research is that we need to identify Alzheimer’s at the very earliest stages even before a person has dementia. Detailed memory testing, PET scans of the brain, analysis of cerebrospinal fluid, and MRIs are some of the tools used to help us to identify initial changes in the brain of an individual with very mild memory loss. If we are able to identify these early changes, using our current research medications may prove to be more helpful. If these efforts are successful, we may be able to more effectively treat or even halt the progression of Alzheimer’s disease. Early detection and research discovery provide hope for stopping Alzheimer’s disease.