Dementia Awareness Week: Conversations with an Alzheimer’s Patient, and other books from Cambridge Medicine

Blog Post by Nisha Doshi, Editorial, Cambridge University Press

4th-10th July 2010 is Dementia Awareness Week in the UK, and this year the Alzheimer’s Society have been asking us to think about people we know living with dementia, and how their lives can be made more enjoyable.

From an in-depth study of communication with an elderly female Alzheimer’s patient over four-and-half-years, to a unique collection of dementia case studies from around the world, Cambridge Medicine’s mental health list offers a wide range of resources to help clinicians and family members caring for dementia patients across the globe.

Conversations with an Alzheimer’s Patient

Alzheimer’s disease is a degenerative brain disease which has major social consequences for the individuals affected and for those people who are emotionally and/or physically close to them. The role which language plays in such relationships stands at the centre of this book. In contrast to traditional analyses carried out by psycholinguists, neurologists and speech pathologists, with speech samples elicited in clinical settings, Heidi Hamilton examines language in the life of one elderly female Alzheimer’s patient from an interactional sociolinguistic perspective. The language of open-ended, naturally occurring conversations between the patient and the author, over four-and-a-half years, is investigated in an attempt to understand how the patient’s communicative abilities and disabilities are related and how they change over time, and, importantly, how they are influenced by pre-emptive and reactive communicative behaviours on the part of the patient’s healthy interlocutor.

Case Studies in Dementia

Case Studies in Dementia presents a collection of case studies from around the world, illustrating both common and unusual causes of dementia, emphasizing clinical reasoning, integrative thinking and problem-solving skills. Each case consists of a clinical history, examination findings and special investigations, followed by diagnosis and discussion. The aim is to reinforce diagnostic skills through careful analysis of individual presenting patterns, and to guide treatment decisions, using state-of-the-art diagnostic classification and tools. The reader will be able to distinguish patients who need reassurance, closer follow-up or immediate referral to specialized services. Written and edited by internationally recognized experts in dementia, these case studies will inform and challenge clinicians at all stages of their careers.

Dementia: A Global Approach

Growth in the incidence of dementia presents major challenges to global healthcare systems. As the burden of dementia in non-Western cultures grows, developing nations are expected to overtake developed nations in terms of dementia prevalence. Insights from developing nations and transcultural considerations are, nevertheless, neglected in the published literature. Dementia: A Global Approach fills this gap by integrating contemporary cross-cultural knowledge about dementia. Each section reviews the literature from the published, predominantly Western, perspective, contrasting it with empirical knowledge from non-Western cultures. Covering major clinical, epidemiological and scientific areas of interest, detailed consideration is also given to care-giving models across the world and management of patients who have migrated between regions. Enriched with personal insights from clinical experts across the globe, this is a key text for neurologists, geriatricians, psychiatrists, psychologists, epidemiologists and all those responsible for managing provisions of dementia services.

Hormones, Cognition and Dementia

A decade ago, oestrogen-containing hormone therapy was viewed as a promising strategy for the prevention and treatment of dementia and age-related cognitive decline. However, treatment trials in women with Alzheimer’s disease showed that oestrogens did not reverse cognitive impairment, and clinical trials in healthy older women indicated that oestrogens did not prevent cognitive decline. The Women’s Health Initiative Memory Study trial even suggested an increased risk of dementia with treatment late in life. What happened? How are we to understand these findings? What are the implications for middle-aged and older women? What about testosterone, and what about men? And where do we go from here? Hormones, Cognition and Dementia brings together world-renowned experts in basic and clinical research on sex steroids, aging, and cognition to integrate existing findings with emerging new data, and offer challenging hypotheses on these key issues.

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One Response to Dementia Awareness Week: Conversations with an Alzheimer’s Patient, and other books from Cambridge Medicine

  1. Pingback: Mental Disorders 101

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