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Complications of Alzheimer's Disease (AD)

In India more than 1 million cases are detected each year of Alzheimer’s disease, a leading neurological ailment that includes memory loss and impairment of mental function. However the majority of the cases are neither reported nor diagnosed due to unawareness. Given below are few of the signs and symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. These can also be listed as complications that can happen in patients who are suffering from Alzheimer’s disease.

Alzheimer’s disease

  • Restlessness and agitation

People diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease commonly have periods of agitation and anxiousness. A loved one’s ability to reason and understand certain situations can also decline as the disease progresses. If they can’t make sense of a confusing world, they can become fearful and agitated.

  • Bladder and bowel problems

Bladder and bowel problems are other complications of Alzheimer’s Disease. As the disease progresses, a loved one may no longer recognize the sensation of needing to use the bathroom. They may also be unable to respond quickly to urges. This can result from limited mobility or limited communication skills.

  • Depression

Some people with Alzheimers Disease also have depression and don’t know how to cope with a loss of cognitive functions. The symptoms of depression may include

  • Sleeping problems
  • changes in mood
  • Withdrawing from friends and relatives
  • Difficulty concentrating

The symptoms of depression can be similar to the general symptoms of Alzheimer’s Disease. This can make it difficult to determine whether your loved one is experiencing depression or just the normal symptoms of Alzheimer’s Disease. A doctor can refer your loved one to a geriatric psychiatrist to make this determination

This occurs when Alzheimer’s impairs the part of the brain that controls swallowing. The lack of muscle coordination can cause food and fluid to travel down the wind pipe instead of the esophagus (food pipe). This leads to pneumonia, which can often be fatal.

  • Falls and head trauma

    Alzheimer’s can start to affect the part of the brain responsible for controlling leg muscles and balance. This impairs the walking, which can lead to falls with head trauma or hip fracture.
  •  InfectionsAlzheimer’s Disease can cause your loved one to lose control of normal body functions, they may forget how to chew food and swallow. If this happens, they have an increased risk of inhaling food and drinks. This can cause pulmonary aspiration and pneumonia, which can be life-threatening.
  • WanderingWandering is another common complication of Alzheimer’s disease. People with Alzheimer’s disease can experience restlessness and sleeplessness due to disruption in their normal sleep patterns. As a result, they may wander out of the home believing that they’re running an errand or going to work. The problem, however, is that a loved one may leave home and forget their way back.

 

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