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Memory Deficits and Aging - Essay Example

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Memory impairment among the elderly often begins casually and progresses consistently leading to a disproportionately impaired cognitive symptom over time. By the middle part of the disorder, the memory is impaired but other types of cognitive functions such as language, visuo-spatial abilities, and key executive functions are also impaired. In its advanced stages, the patient ultimately becomes disoriented to time, place, and finally, persons. The advanced and latter stages will then require specialized medical care and attention to address the daily functioning of the elderly.
The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM IV; APA 1994) defined dementia as "the progress of multiple cognitive deficits that covers memory impairment and one of any of these cognitive disturbances: aphasia, apraxia, agnosia, or a disturbance in executive functions" (p. 134). Cognitive disturbance as manifested in dementia pertains to a decline from a higher normal level of daily functioning to a severely impaired level which seriously affects an individual's discharge of his/her social, family or work duties. The prevalence of dementia increases significantly with age, and approximately 6% of individuals over age 65 and 20% over age 80 suffer from a a disabling degree of dementia (Plum 1987).
Dementia and amnesia are...
However, a single pattern of preserved and impaired cognitive abilities may not pertain to all amnesic sicknesses.

Research Questions:
This study will explore these research questions:
a.) What is the incidence of memory deficits among the British elderly population considering functional limitations and demographic characteristics
b.) What are the social services and medical services available for the British elderly population who are afflicted with this memory deficits

c.) What is the extent of self-reported memory function among the British elderly population who are afflicted with dementia
d.) What services do private elderly facilities provide for those who suffer from memory deficits

Research Methods
This study will utilize a quantitative methodology consisting of a survey questionnaire which is self-administered and the implementation of a Randt Memory Test (RMT) which will be administered to approximately 200 British elderly persons in a private facility.
A RANDT MEMORY TEST (RMT) (Randt & Brown 1983) will be administered to the designated respondents. The RMT is a memory test which covers seven subtests: tests of general information, immediate span of auditory-verbal attention, verbal learning and recall, picture recognition, and learning test of the names of the previous tasks. The objective of this test is to present a global survey of patients' memory complaints.
A key highlight of the RMT over other types of tests is the presence of at least five alternative forms which then allows for multiple testing of the respondents over short intervals of time.

Aims of the Research
The ability to measure and characterize memory disorders at both the structural and functional ...Show more


Memory loss affects the elderly population in general. It also affects their functional ability and independence as integral individuals. A most common form of memory deficit is dementia. Dementia is a progressive disease which has these marked symptoms: irreversible loss of memory, cognitive difficulties, speech and mobility limitations, disorientation, and marked changes in personality.
Author : dickensgrace
Memory Deficits and Aging essay example
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