Healthy Living

Alzheimer's Disease and Personality Changes

A new diagnosis for early detection?

A new diagnosis for early detection?

A group of researchers are proposing a new diagnosis, known as Mild Behavioral Impairment (MBI) for the early detection of AD. This new diagnosis would help in identifying unusual changes in behavior or personality, which are often overlooked in AD. The researchers presented their idea at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference in Toronto, along with a 34 question checklist to help identify those at a greater risk of AD. By completing the checklist, doctors would be able to identify if patients have MBI, entailing future neuropsychiatric symptoms of AD. The checklist includes questions such as:

  • “Has the person become agitated, aggressive, irritable, or temperamental?”
  • “Does she/he no longer care about anything?”

The researchers propose that if the answers to these questions are all yes, it could be an indication of an early stage of AD. Nina Silverberg, from the Alzheimer’s Disease Centers Programs at the National Institute on Aging, stated “I think we need something like this. Most people think of Alzheimer’s as primarily a memory disorder, but we do know from years of research that is also can start as a behavioral issue.”