Re­search con­nects skin test with de­men­tia de­tec­tion

BioSpectrum (Asia) - - Science News -

The ab­nor­mal brain changes which lead to de­men­tia also cause changes in the skin that give rise to pres­sure ul­cers, ac­cord­ing to re­searchers at Jerusalem’s Herzog Med­i­cal Cen­ter. Thus, a skin test can be used as a tool for early de­tec­tion and di­ag­no­sis of de­men­tia and could de­lay or halt the dis­ease.

The hy­poth­e­sis is that the ab­nor­mal brain changes lead­ing to de­men­tia oc­cur in other body sys­tems as well. Changes in the skin tis­sue of de­men­tia pa­tients make them more vul­ner­a­ble to the devel­op­ment of pres­sure ul­cers.

The skin test can be a pow­er­ful tool for early de­tec­tion and spe­cific di­ag­no­sis of de­men­tia be­cause not all de­men­tia re­quires the same treat­ment and not ev­ery cog­ni­tive de­cline ends in de­men­tia, the re­searchers said.

This in­for­ma­tion

will

help clin­i­cians de­sign ap­pro­pri­ate treat­ments to slow down and stop the pro­gres­sion of de­men­tia to the ex­tent that pres­sure sores and cog­ni­tive im­pair­ments can be fa­tal. If the early stages of de­men­tia can be iden­ti­fied, it will be pos­si­ble to in­ter­vene and in­hibit ac­cel­er­ated cog­ni­tive de­cline through non­in­va­sive brain stim­u­la­tion and the use of cog­ni­tive em­pow­er­ment pro­grams.

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