Doctors Can Diagnose Early Alzheimer's Disease Through Sniff Test

Posted: Dec 21 2016, 4:03am CST | by , in News | Latest Science News

 

Doctors Can Diagnose Early Alzheimer's Disease Through Sniff Test
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  • Sniff test may be useful in diagnosing early Alzheimer's disease
 

Tests that measure sense of smell will become important for neurologists. The scientists discovered that lack of smell happens in early Alzheimer. A new study confirmed that a sniff test can help diagnose Alzheimer's disease.

Tests that measure sense of smell will become important for neurologists. The scientists discovered that lack of smell happens in early Alzheimer. A new study confirmed that a sniff test can help diagnose Alzheimer's disease.

The study published in the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.

Scientists also discovered that, the sniff test can also help in diagnosing MCI, mild cognitive impairment, which is another form of dementia that leads to Alzheimer.

Neurologists have always tried to discover new ways to diagnose people with early dementia which otherwise have no symptoms.  Experts discovered that Alzheimer medication may not be useful once dementia occurs.

If there is decrease in sense of smell, it may be the early signs of dementia, stated an investigator David R. Roalf, PhD, who is also an assistant professor in the department of Psychiatry at Penn.

David R Roalf used Sniffin Sticks Odor Identification Test that is easily available. In this test the subject is allowed to smell 16 odors. The scientists did this test along with the Montreal Cognitive Assessment), to 728 elderly people.

The cognitive test discovered 75 percent of people with MCI, but the figure reached 87 percent when sniff test was also used. The combination of two tests helped diagnose dementia in elderly people. The combination also proved very accurate in finding more advanced MCI.

The test can not only diagnose dementia, but it can also see people at high risk of severe forms of Alzheimer, stated Roalf. Several dementia clinics have started using this test in several areas to detect the disease in those who yet have no other symptoms of dementia.

The scientists are trying to make Sniffin Stick test a bit shorter i.e. from 8 minutes to 3 minutes test. However, the smaller test would be as accurate as the large test, stated Roalf. Presence of protein markers can also be detected from nasal fluid. Protein markers exist in brain before dementia happens.

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