How is Alzheimer’s Disease Diagnosed?
Healthcare providers use several methods to determine if a person has Alzheimer’s disease. This is because many other conditions, especially neurological conditions, can cause dementia and other symptoms of Alzheimer’s.
In the beginning steps of an Alzheimer’s diagnosis, a provider will ask questions to better understand your health and daily living. Your provider may also ask someone close to you, like a family member or caregiver, for insight into your symptoms.
They’ll ask about:
- Overall health.
- Current medications.
- Medical history.
- Ability to carry out daily activities.
- Changes in mood, behavior and personality.
A provider will also:
- Perform a physical exam and a neurological exam.
- Perform a mental status exam, which includes tests to assess memory, problem-solving, attention, basic math and language.
- Order standard medical tests, such as blood and urine tests, to rule out other possible causes of the symptoms.
- Order brain imaging tests, such as a brain CT, brain MRI or positron emission tomography, to support an Alzheimer’s diagnosis or to rule out other possible conditions.
Source: Women’s Alzheimer’s Movement
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The Self-Administered Gerocognitive Exam (SAGE)
You can also take this 15-minute pencil and paper test ; you can take it easily. It might prove you with some good information to washer with your doctor.
The Self-Administered Gerocognitive Exam (SAGE) is designed to detect early signs of cognitive, memory or thinking impairments. It evaluates your thinking abilities and helps physicians to know how well your brain is working.