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Beating the Dementia Monster


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Dave Brown is a retired engineer and high school science teacher. When he was 66 years old, he was diagnosed with mild cognitive impairment and was told this was almost certainly the early stages of Alzheimer's disease. Notably, an MRI found that his hippocampus had shrunk to the point that it was in the first (lowest) percentile of the general population. The hippocampus is the part of the brain most key to short-term memory, and his had shriveled dramatically. As time progressed, his symptoms increased, his work became more challenging, and he found it necessary to stop driving.

Stunned, but not willing to be overcome by the disease, he investigated the disease and learned what science was saying about how to treat it. The first thing he learned was that there were no drugs available to reverse, stop, or even slow the progress of the disease. There were drugs to treat the symptoms, but people on these drugs ended up in the same place at the same time -- dead in a few years. But there was plenty of research showing the effectiveness of other strategies to stop and even reverse the progress of the disease. He tried a mix of these strategies and found that they actually worked! Atrophy of his brain was halted, and his cognitive test scores stopped their decline and even showed signs of reversal. Most notably, the powerful depression of mood was reversed, and his joy of life returned.

David Brown is eager to share his story, because he is certain that others will benefit. In "Beating the Dementia Monster," he tells the story of the progress of the disease and how he stopped it. It provides a lively account of his experience, what he did, and discussions of the scientific research that explains why he has been so successful.

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