Diagnosis of Dementia

Diagnosing dementia is not always easy. However, doctors use a lot of tests and strategies to make the diagnosis. Before they diagnose the condition, they begin by ruling out some of the treatable conditions such as depression, Vitamin B12 deficiency, hydrocephalus or other conditions which cause symptoms similar to that of dementia.

Accurate diagnosis of dementia is very important in order to offer the correct treatment to the patient. The doctor delves through a patient’s history to check if there is any family history of dementia. The doctor may also want to know if you suffered from attention disorders during childhood so that the condition can be ruled out. The doctor may then perform a physical examination to rule out any treatable causes of dementia. If the condition is stemmed from biological or physical conditions, it may be treatable.

  • Other tests that the doctor uses are neurological evaluations, cognitive and neuropsychological tests.
  • Cognitive characteristics such as math skills, language skills; memory, mental functioning and problem solving skills are tested by means of tests.
  • Another standard test, known as the Mini Mental State Examination may also be used.
  • Some doctors may suggest undergoing brain scans, CT scans, MRIs and X rays.
  • EEGs, MEG and SPECT or PET tests are also used to check for proper brain functioning.
  • You may also be asked to get a psychiatric evaluation and a pre-symptomatic testing.