According to neurologists at Beijing’s Xuanwu Hospital of Capital Medical University, a 19-year-old boy was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in China.
The world’s youngest person to be diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, a 19-year-old from China, was given the diagnosis at a memory clinic.
Memory loss, hippocampal atrophy, and shrinkage are among the early symptoms of the neurodegenerative illness that the patient’s brain displays, according to neurologists at Beijing’s Xuanwu Hospital of Capital Medical University.
They identified the teenager as having early-onset Alzheimer’s, the most prevalent type of dementia, after ruling out other potential reasons for cognitive deterioration. The study casts doubt on the prevalent understanding of the illness and its connection to aging. According to the authors, it also highlights the necessity for greater research among younger people.
“Exploring the mysteries of young people with Alzheimer’s disease may become one of the most challenging scientific questions of the future,” they said in a statement.
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According to the most recent data from Blue Cross Blue Shield (pdf below), the number of people aged 30 to 64 who received an Alzheimer’s diagnosis increased by 200% between 2013 and 2017, with the average age of an early onset diagnosis being 49 years old. According to the Mayo Clinic, while the disease’s prevalence rises with age, only five to six percent of those who are diagnosed with it experience its recognizable symptoms before turning 65.
According to the study, the teen’s memory loss began with a lack of concentration in class roughly two years prior to the clinic visit. He had problems reading, and remembering what had happened the day before, and would frequently misplace his items as his cognitive abilities declined.
The teen had to drop out of high school since he was unable to complete his homework, recall whether he had eaten, or even react to situations quickly enough. An auditory and learning test’s findings, which put him well behind his contemporaries in both short- and long-term memory recall, provided additional evidence of a memory issue.
According to the study, a sample of the young patient’s CSF fluid contained a high level of p-tau181, and a PET scan revealed slight hippocampus atrophy. The authors determined that he had “probable” Alzheimer’s disease based on both signs.
Interestingly, a whole genome sequence revealed no inherited gene mutations for the condition, which is often present in younger people.
A study published in JAMA Neurology last year by a research team led by Natalia Gomes Gonçalves of the Department of Pathology at the University of Sao Paulo Medical School in Sao Paulo, Brazil, said that ultra-processed foods can be linked to cognitive decline.
Also, there is no family history of the condition or any head injuries or illnesses that could account for the patient’s cognitive decline. The mysterious and unusual case was just published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease.
Read the study given below: