alcohol-dementia

Alcohol Dementia is a form of dementia that is caused by long-term and chronic drinking of Alcohol.

It is also referred to as Alcohol-Induced Persisting Dementia

This excessive drinking causes damage to the Brain resulting in neurological damage

Can be similar to Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome which can be caused by excess alcohol – however the precipitating factor in this condition is the lack of Vitamin B1 rather then the direct cause of alcohol

Between 5 and 10% of those with Dementia are a direct result of excessive alcohol

Onset of symptoms can be seen in early 30’s – but more common between ages 50 and 70.

Male:

6+ drinks per day – at risk

Female

4+ drinks per day – at risk

Symptoms

–  Memory loss
–  Change in mental status
–  Coordination problems
–  Change in language skills
–  Personality changes
–  Motor skill decrease

Criteria

A.)  Multiple cognitive defects – seen by both:

1.)  Memory impairment

2.)  One or more of the following difficulties

a.)  Language problems  (Aphasia)
b.)  Change in motor functions  (Apraxia)
c.)  Inability to recognize certain objects  (Agnosia)
d.)  Difficulty with planning, organizing, sequencing, or abstracting)

B.)  A1 + A2 and a significant decline from previous level

C.)  Problems are seen even though intoxication or withdrawal has past

D.)  Evidence of persisting effects of substance use

Treatment

–  If early in presentation symptoms – may be reversed

–  Stop drinking

–  Healthy nutrition

–  Vitamin replacement especially thiamine

–  Appears easier for women

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