Oct 31, 2010

Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (Video)

Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) is a rapidly fatal disorder that impairs memory and coordination and causes behavior changes.


By Bob DeMarco
Alzheimer's Reading Room

“Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease” is believed to be caused by consumption of products from cattle affected by “mad cow disease.”


Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease is caused by the misfolding of prion protein throughout the brain.

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Emotionally moving.

Video no longer available.

Steve, a California physician, whose wife spontaneously developed CJD, shares his experiences with the public. CJD is a rapidly progressive dementia whose study may yield important insights about other, more prevalent dementias. We thank Steve and his children for sharing their stories. Their contribution has contributed to a growing awareness about CJD.

Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) is a rare, degenerative, invariably fatal brain disorder. It affects about one person in every one million people per year worldwide; in the United States there are about 200 cases per year.

CJD usually appears in later life and runs a rapid course. Typically, onset of symptoms occurs about age 60, and about 90 percent of patients die within 1 year.

In the early stages of disease, patients may have failing memory, behavioral changes, lack of coordination and visual disturbances. As the illness progresses, mental deterioration becomes pronounced and involuntary movements, blindness, weakness of extremities, and coma may occur.

Also see National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke

UCSF Memory and Aging Center Channel

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Original content Bob DeMarco, the Alzheimer's Reading Room