Most people who suffer from Alzheimer’s disease will experience some behavioral changes, but findings of a new study reveal that depression, sleep problems and anxiety are indicators that can show up before these patients start to have memory loss.
For the new study published in the journal Neurology on Jan. 14, Catherine Roe from the Washington University School of Medicine, together with colleagues, tracked over 2,416 individuals who were at least 50 years old and who did not exhibit cognitive difficulties when they first visited an Alzheimer’s center.
Over a seven-year period, half of the subjects developed cognitive problems that are indicative of dementia while half remained to have normal cognition.
The researchers found that the patients who developed dementia had increased odds of being diagnosed with depression sooner that the patients who did not develop dementia during the study period.
Thirty percent of the patients who developed the degenerative disease had depression during the fourth year of the study while only 15 percent of those who did not have dementia did.