Jul 28, 2012

Saturday Alzheimer's Review 104

A review of falling, balance, walking, gait, and the increased risk of falling from taking multiple medications in the elderly.

Alzheimer's Reading Room

Problems with Balance, Walking, Falling Can Be an Early Sign of Dementia

A simple balance test may help doctors predict a decline in memory and brain function in people with Alzheimer's disease, research shows.

In a study, researchers found that Alzheimer's patients with an abnormal one-leg balance test experienced greater decline in brain function over two years than those with a normal one-leg balance test.

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Walking and Gait Analysis May Track Cognitive Decline

Difficulties with walking are not inevitable consequences of aging. They are, however, common and relevant problems among older adults.

Research shows that people with walking difficulties not only have an increased risk of falling, but may also have an increased risk developing memory disorders and dementia.

Moderate Walking May Grow Brain Region Related to Memory

The researchers found that one year of exercise training increased the size of the hippocampus by two percent. Shrinking of the hippocampus is a characteristic of Alzheimer's disease.

Which Drugs Increase the Risk of Falling for the Elderly

Falls are the leading cause of both fatal and nonfatal injuries for adults sixty-five and older, and research suggests that those taking four or more medications are at an even greater risk than those who don’t—perhaps two to three times greater.

Original content Bob DeMarco, the Alzheimer's Reading Room