Alzheimer's Disease | Overview

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Learn More About Alzheimer's Disease

Early-Onset Alzheimer’s

What is Alzheimer’s disease?

Alzheimer’s disease is a type of dementia. Dementia is a word that doctors use to describe a wide range of symptoms linked to physical and functional changes in the brain. Dementia usually affects a person’s memory, thinking abilities, and behavior. These mental changes make it hard for a person who has dementia to care for him- or herself.

Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia, but many other things can also cause dementia.

How common is Alzheimer’s disease?

Alzheimer’s disease is common in people older than 65 years of age. About 1 out of every 8 people who are 65 years of age or older have the disease. Nearly half of people 85 years of age and older have Alzheimer’s.

People who are younger than 65 years of age can also have Alzheimer’s disease. This is called early onset Alzheimer’s. Early onset Alzheimer’s is not very common. Approximately 200,000 people in the United States have early onset Alzheimer’s.

 

This content has been supported by Forest Laboratories Inc.

Bibliography

See a list of resources used in the development of this information.

Written by familydoctor.org editorial staff

Reviewed/Updated: 08/12
Created: 04/12

Learn More About Alzheimer's Disease

Early-Onset Alzheimer’s

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