What Causes Alzheimer's

Living With Alzheimer's

What Causes Alzheimer's Disease

Many people with loved ones suffering from Alzheimer’s disease continue to ask the question “what causes Alzheimers” but in perfect honesty, even the most dedicated experts on the subject matter have yet to determine the answer to this question.

Experts are confident they are now able to detect Alzheimer’s even in its very early stages and are proficient in predicting how and at what rate will the disease progress in diagnosed patients but identifying what causes Alzheimers continues to be a puzzle without a solution. If only the causes of Alzheimers can be better understood, chances are that an appropriate cure or prevention can be developed. However, today’s medical technology is still unable to answer that riddle.

Even though the causes of Alzheimer's is still undecided, the medical world does have an idea of how Alzheimer’s disease behaves and what can be expected as it progresses. To steer away from the technical discussion that is inevitable in most diseases pertaining to the brain, the cliff notes on Alzheimer’s defines it as a non-reversible progressive disease that affects memory and higher brain functions; primarily logical thinking processes.

The first onset of symptoms typically manifest at age 60 or shortly after and is one of the leading causes of dementia in old people. A physical examination of the brain of an advanced Alzheimer’s patient will show three distinct manifestations of the disease: tangles in the brain, loss of connections between the brain and nerve cells, and tangled bundles of fibers known in today’s medical circles as amyloid plaques.

The current search for what causes Alzheimers is being conducted on three fronts, namely family history and genetics, the influence of the external environment, and the influence of the internal environment.

On the first prong of investigation as to what causes Alzheimers, doctors are certain there is a connection between familial history and the disease including the elevated risk for catching the disease in families with family remembers already diagnosed with Alzheimers. However, the genetic component of Alzheimer’s is something that is yet to be fully grasped and remains to be a search that requires a definitive and substantial answer in the future.

While genetics has come up empty handed on the subject, the potential factors from external and internal environments are also drawing attention in the search to answer what causes Alzheimers. External environment vectors include viral, bacterial, and fungal agents that can forcefully tweak the body’s physical characteristics resulting in the observed physical manifestations of the disease. Internal vectors on the other hand pertain to chemical imbalances or immuno-related disorders which are not caused by external factors. These areas are currently under vigorous study and until a definitive answer is arrived at, the search for a cure of Alzheimer’s disease will continue to progress as slowly as it is doing now.

Current advances point to what causes Alzheimers as a collection or combination of many factors that eventually lead to the onset and manifestation of the disease. There is still no consensus on this theory but it carries the strongest support based on existing evidence. Many around the world hope that the current search will lead to something conclusive so as to open avenues for prevention of the disease and even a cure wherever possible. It can only be hoped that such a discovery will come soon enough to spare many lives from the debilitating and cruel effects of Alzheimer’s disease.

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