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I Have Alzheimer’s or Another Dementia
It was suggested that I share my question with you on this forum. My question is if I have been tested for early onset Alzheimer's am I immune from getting late onset Alzheimer's? I was tested for early onset a few years ago and I was told that I didn't have early onset. Both of my parents have died from Alzheimer's both of which were diagnosed with late onset and I'm wondering if that makes me more susceptible to the late onset? Thank you for any help you can give me
Welcome Scorpio. How old are you? Why were you tested for early onset AD? There is a subset of early Onset AD patients who do have a strong hereditary component. But you would probably already know if many members have or had hereditary early onset AD.
Some PWDs develop early Onset AD without a strong genetic component, that we know of. These people develop AD before age 65. Some dementias, such as FTD, are more likely to develop before age 65.
There is a familial component to developing late stage AD. If your parents or other close relatives were affected, you are more likely to develop AD. But this is not a surety. In contrast, people with no family history can develop late stage AD. Advancing age is the primary precipitating factor. The older you are, the more likely you will develop AD. But not everyone does.
Become aware of possible precipitating factors, such as head injuries, use of drugs that affect cognition, also nutritional deficiencies, hormonal issues, and other medical illnesses. Do what you can to improve your overall health. Follow Best Practices. I agree with Ellis, do not allow fear of developing AD to control or destroy your life. Live each day as he encourages.
I want to thank all of you who have taken the time out of your busy days to respond to my question as well as for the thoughtful advice you shared. To answer your question Lisa L. I will turn 67 on Halloween. The reason I got tested for the early onset was because I noticed that I had trouble remembering things, sometimes simple things, that never gave me trouble before. With watching both my Mom and Dad dying of this horrible disease, I'm terrified of dying from it also. As far as I know none of my three sisters have been diagnosed with it. Lisa L. I am so very sorry to read about your situation and wish there was something I, or someone, could do to help so you wouldn't be so alone. I, too, live by myself and I know first hand how painful loneliness can be. God Bless you both, EllisA and Lisa L. I will keep you both in my prayers.
Scorpio, age-related memory loss is very common on our age group, but this is not the same as Alzheimer's Disease. AD is a disease with characteristics. I don't know how much testing or screening you had. I think it is a good idea to monitor ourselves for cognitive changes, just as we monitor ourselves periodically for signs of cancer. But we don't need to obsess over it. Knowledge is power. Read about signs and symptoms at alz.org. Live healthfully, and go on with your life.
Please don't feel sorry for me because I prefer living alone versus living in a bad situation. Living alone successfully does require preparation, though. It's good to learn and become prepared! It is very hard. I learned a lot from these boards.