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Alzheimer's Disease

Pankow, Nadine

doi: 10.1097/01.NNN.0000361336.87833.c2
Department: Letter

I have Alzheimer's and I am 77 years old. At some point I decided that my forgetting words so often, along with my family history, meant it was time to “face the music.” In the fall of 2004 I turned to Loyola Hospital for a diagnosis. After the usual battery of tests, I was given the mild 95 percent cognitive impairment award, some instructions on how to live the rest of my life, and sent on my way. My primary care doctor tried different memory drugs and finally we found one I could tolerate. And yes, they helped.

So now, I exercise on a regular schedule and try to exercise my brain by doing card games and puzzles.

My ability to recall things seems to be more age-related than disease-related, but then that might the denial that often accompanies this disease. I have never been sorry that I paid attention to my inner voice and got tested. Now I live a more careful life, exercise very regularly, try to eat wisely, and get a good amount of sleep. My social life is very active.

And of course, I got all my personal affairs in order with an elder lawyer. And I love Neurology Now.

Nadine Pankow

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