8 Treatable Conditions That Mimic Dementia

8 Treatable Conditions That Mimic Dementia

With headlines trumpeting the rising rates of Alzheimer’s disease, it’s easy to get that distressing feeling that a misplaced coffee cup or forgotten dry cleaning might mean that you (or a loved one) are losing your mental edge or, worse, sliding inevitably toward dementia.

But you should know that more than 100 disorders — from the side effects of medication to urinary tract infections — can also trigger dementia-like symptoms. “Some of these conditions are not serious, but they’re often missed or misdiagnosed in seniors,” says P. Murali Doraiswamy, coauthor of The Alzheimer’s Action Plan and chief of biological psychiatry at Duke University Medical Center. “Caught early enough, they may actually be reversible.”

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