Alzheimer's Disease, Dementia and Mild Cognitive Impairment

Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a chronic neurodegenerative disease that results in the loss of neurons and synapses in the cerebral cortex and certain subcortical structures, resulting in gross atrophy of the temporal lobe, parietal lobe, and parts of the frontal cortex and cingulate gyrus. It is the most common neurodegenerative disease. However, clinical trials have developed certain compounds that could potentially change the future of Alzheimer's disease treatments.

Dementia manifests as a set of related symptoms, which usually surface when the brain is damaged by injury or disease. The symptoms involve progressive impairments in memory, thinking, and behavior, which negatively impact a person's ability to function and carry out everyday activities. Aside from memory impairment and a disruption in thought patterns, the most common symptoms include emotional problems, difficulties with language, and decreased motivation.

Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) is a neurocognitive disorder which involves cognitive impairments beyond those expected based on an individual's age and education but which are not significant enough to interfere with instrumental activities of daily living. MCI may occur as a transitional stage between normal aging and dementia, especially Alzheimer's disease. It includes both memory and non-memory impairments. The cause of the disorder remains unclear, as well as its prevention and treatment.