That is a good question! My H was diagnosed with MCI (mild cognitive impairment) in 2016. We are in California and go to an HMO, Kaiser. We were referred to Kaiser's Memory Center where he has had all the testing including with a neuropsychologist. He also had an MRI. Now, he is seen once a year at the Memory Clinic and given the general testing and we are both "interviewed". I contact them via phone when I have questions and / or concerns. They started him on donepezil and now he also takes memantine. I requested an anti-depressant / anxiety, and they have tried Zoloft and Lexipro, but he developed tremors so they were stopped. The last visit he was diagnosed with mild dementia. The way I understand it is that they cannot specifically diagnose Alzheimer's other than through an autopsy. But 80% of dementia diagnoses are caused by Alzheimer's. However, quite a lot of people on this site state that their doctors give the diagnosis of Alzheimer's. It can be confusing. But I have been satisfied with our annual visits, since we have access to them anytime we need it via phone or email; they are very quick to respond.
I have wondered the same thing. They can't fix him, so whats tge piint?
We have been seeing a neurologist for my husband since May of 2021. They did the standard MoCA test, asked lots of questions, did an EEG and read an MRI of the brain done before our visit. The second visit was to have an extended EEG set up. He wore a cap home for 72 Hours which monitored brain activity 24/7. In August of 2021, we were told he had mild cognitive impairment and he was put on memantine. In September, in a televisit they informed us that he showed moderate atrophy of the brain tissue, including in the cerebellum. In December we had an in person visit where they conducted the MOcA test again. His score was 3 points lower, which prompted a new prescription, donepezil, which his system could not tolerate so it was stopped. He had an episode in February 2022, which prompted a new MRI and EEG. Results showed multiple lesions throughout the brain, shrinkage of brain tissue and slowing of the brain. I asked if this changes the diagnosis. She said he has vascular dementia and progressive dementia. I asked if he has Alzheimer's. She said she could not say that definitively, but all symptoms and testing indicate that.
Then I asked, what now? Do we keep seeing them and to what end? She said yes, they keep monitoring him for changes. They will treat symptoms as they arise. Currently treating moods, depression and anger with Depakote. She said there will be more symptoms arise. She said they will be there to help him and to help me in dealing with issues and in making decisions.
I know this us a long post, but hopefully UT answers the question.
In the case of ALZ, I am not sure as my mother was dx and is treated by her psychiatrist. Hubs doesn't have any dx from anyone yet. However, my son has seen a neurologist since he was very young as a part of his genetic mutation, and she looked at functional skills, behaviors, MRI and EEG data for his annual evaluations.
We never share your personal information with anyone.