Oral Presentation II. Alzheimer Disease.

Alzheimer disease
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  ORAL PRESENTATION: BICYCLE, SPOON AND APPLE. INTRODUCTION.  In this oral presentation, I like to speak about these three words: bicycle, spoon and apple. But, what is the meaning of these three words? A bicycle is a vehicle consisting of two wheels held in a frame one behind the other, propelled by pedals and steered with handlebars attached to the front of wheel. Secondly, a spoon is an implement consisting of a small, shallow oval or round bowl on a long handle, used for eating, stirring, and serving food. And finally, an apple is the rounded fruit of a tree of the rose family, with green or red skin and crisp flesh. For me, this three united words mean Alzheimer disease. WHAT IS THE ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE?  It is an irreversible neurodegenerative disease whose cause is unknown, which attacks the brain producing critical deterioration of cognitive, behavioral and motor functions thus condemning its sufferer to depend on a career all 24 hours. It is the most frequent form of dementia. It does not constitute a part of the regular ageing process, nor is it contagious or hereditary (except for a small percentage of cases, less than 5%). It is an illness that is linked to old age and there are about 800,000 sufferers in Spain at present. WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS?  The disease course is divided in four levels: pre-dementia, early, moderate and advanced. This disease is different for each person, but there are many common symptoms. Some symptoms can be confused with age or stress. But, I can explain some symptoms:    Aggression. Aggressive behaviors may be verbal (shouting, name-calling) or physical (hitting, pushing).    Wandering. It is common for individuals with dementia to wander and become lost.    Anxiety or agitation. The person may feel anxious or agitated, or may become restless and need to move around or pace.    Confusion. The person may not recognize familiar people, places or things. He or she may forget relationships, call family members by other names or become confused about where home is. The person may also forget the purpose of common items, such as a pen or a fork.    Hallucinations. When individuals Alzheimer's disease have a hallucination, they see, hear, smell, taste or feel something that isn't there.     Repetition. The person with Alzheimer's may do or say something over and over again  –  like repeating a word, question or activity.    Suspicion. Memory loss and confusion may cause the person with Alzheimer's to perceive things in new, unusual ways. Individuals may become suspicious of those around them, even accusing others of theft, infidelity or other improper behavior. Sometimes the person may also misinterpret what he or she sees and hears. DIAGNOSIS.  The professionals who treat the Alzheimer disease are the neurologist, psychiatrist and psychologist .  A.   EVALUATING MOOD AND MENTAL STATUS. Mental status is tested to give the doctor a general idea of how well the mind is working. This testing gives an overall sense of whether a person:    Is aware of having symptoms.    Knows the date, time and where he or she is.    Can remember a short list of words, follow instructions and do simple calculations. The doctor may ask the person his or her address, what year it is or who is serving as president. The individual may also be asked to spell a word backward, draw a clock or copy a design. B.   PHYSICAL EXAM AND DIAGNOSTIC TESTS. The doctor will perform procedures to assess the person's overall health like evaluating diet, checking blood pressure or listening to the heart. Blood and urine samples will be collected, and other laboratory tests may also be ordered. All these conditions may cause confused thinking, memory problems or other symptoms similar to dementia. C.   NEUROLOGICAL EXAM. A doctor, sometimes a neurologist who specializes in disorders of the brain and nervous system, will closely evaluate the person for problems that may signal brain disorders other than Alzheimer's. The doctor will also test the person's reflexes, balance, eye movement, speech and sensation. The neurological examination may also include a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or computer tomography (CT). THE FAMILY.  In the life, there are many events that change all our future existence. One of them, which nobody expects, is someone reporting to you that a nearby and significant  person for you has Alzheimer. When we take care of our patient we don’t think in the changes that are going to take place in our life. Changes that can be developed are: · Changes in the familiar relationships. · Changes at work and in the economic situation. · Changes in our spare time. · Changes in health. · Changes in the state of mind. At first moment, the patient needs supervision, but later he or she will need help 24 hours a day. The patient cannot continue carrying his or her previous responsibilities so relatives will be taking new functions as: helping in the cleanliness, contributing with money and taking care of the patient, among others. Do you remember the three words that I have explained before?  Normally, most people who suffer this disease aren’t capable of remembering these words: spoon, bicycle and apple.
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