Understanding Alzheimer Essay

Submitted By mozzart60
Words: 376
Pages: 2

Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive, degenerative and irreversible brain disorder. It is estimated that 2-5 percent of people over 65 years of age and up to 20 percent of those over 80 years of age suffer from the disease. Although there have been advances made in the control of this disease through drugs, it has no definite cure. Patients with Alzheimer’s disease suffer from disorientation and intellectual and psychological impairment which eventually lead to death. The exact cause of the disease is still unknown. However, it has been associated with certain causes that merit to be studied, as they lead to devastating and sometimes fatal consequences.

Various theories have linked the disease to a number of other causes. It is believed that the disease can be inherited. People who have a parent or sibling with Alzheimer’s disease were found to be five times more likely to develop the disease as compared to those who did not. Some believe that highly chemically reactive oxygen molecules, known as free radicals, may be the cause. These, which have been blamed for heart disease and cancer, may lead to Alzheimer’s. In addition, other theories claim that physical trauma, such as whiplash injuries, or the body’s immune system may be the culprit.

Alzheimer’s disease is linked to the gradual formation of plaque in the brain, particularly in the hippocampus and adjoining cortex. As the disease develops, it destroys chemical messages used by the cells of the brain to communicate with each other. It is though that the disease either disrupts the production of an…