Memory loss

See cognitive decline

Memory loss may be partial or total and it is normal when it comes with aging.

Sudden onset may be result of brain trauma and it may be permanent or temporary.

When caused by medical conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease, the memory loss is gradual and tends to be permanent.

Normal forgetting occurs more frequently with age, but the more serious progressive, retrograde forgetting, which may have life-threatening consequences, occurs with Alzheimer’s disease or other dementias.

The main type of memory loss is short term memory.

Short term memory is memory from just seconds to minutes ago.

Memory formation Is an active process and forgetting reflects a combination of defects in initial memory coding, localization of memories, or memory retrieval.
Memory loss is a pathologic process.
The formation and loss of memories of both active processes involved with strengthening and weakening of synapses through actions directed by the neurons themselves.
Activity dependent strengthening of synapses underlies memory formation.
Declines in episodic memory and executive function parallel volume losses in brain structures, such as the hippocampus and dorsolateral prefrontal cortex.
The hippocampus, and the entorhinal cortex and its appended regions, including the thalamus, are implicated most consistently in memory disorders of all types.

The active depletion of weak synapses, results in memory loss.

The memory is affected by the damage that may occur in the different parts of the brain such as medial temporal lobe, hippocampus, cortex and frontal lobes.

Damage to the medial temporal lobe and hippocampus can impair ability to acquire new declarative memory whereas damage to the cortex can disrupt retrieval of old memories and interfere with acquisition of new memories.

25-50% of community dwellers over the age of 65 years report subjective memory loss.

Complaints reported by as many as 56% of older individuals (DeCarli).

Complaints about memory loss may predict a mild increase in the risk of dementia, even without demonstrating objective memory impairment.

Subjective memory impairment may be related to depression, anxiety, stress, fatigue, neurosis, sleep disorders, chronic pain, adverse drug effects, and substance abuse.

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