" So, whether it’s an accurate diagnosis is another question. Sometimes people don’t feel comfortable making that diagnosis without additional testing. For example, in a primary care office many primary care physicians do not necessarily feel comfortable making that diagnosis in a clinic setting. A patient can have a very classic history before of dementia, but they might not hear it from their primary care doctor because these are short appointments, there may not be sufficient information, and the confidence level in making the diagnosis just based on twenty-minute appointments isn’t there.
However, if a patient’s illness does meet criteria for MCI, that’s basically just impairment in the instrumental activities of daily living. So that would be difficulty with paying bills or other financial actions, cooking, making shopping lists, grocery shopping. And there can be forgetfulness, but not to the point that it interferes with activities such as grooming themselves, bathing, the activities of daily living. And if it’s caught early, before people do have the diagnosis of dementia, they do go through a stage where their symptoms are just not as severe.
So, not everyone who has MCI will progress, that’s maybe just 10 to 15 percent of people with MCI that will progress to dementia. But again, there can be many causes of mild cognitive impairment, too. "
The First Signs of Dementia, Or Just Normal Aging?
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