Study Confirms ‘Sniff Test’ May Be Useful in Diagnosing Early Alzheimer’s Disease

How important is the nose to the health of an older person? Many people have become use to the routine of various health screenings suggested by their doctors to provide information about the status of personal health. Researchers are working to add the smell test to already existing tests which provide information about the risk of Dementia and Alzheimer. Currently there are three levels of risk which include healthy, mild and advanced stages of these diseases. The researchers are focusing on developing a smell test which will take 3 minutes or less. The current smell tests are not efficient timewise for the testing laboratories. The researchers suggest that early patient screening may contribute to early diagnosis and treatment. For those patients not screened, the researchers suggest adding the screening to a preventive care list.

Key Points:

  • 1There is a sniff test in which one identifies 16 different smells.
  • 2This test is helpful at diagnosing Alzheimers’s in combination with a cognitive test.
  • 3They are trying to shorten the test to make it easier to test for Alzheimers.

Prompted by prior studies that have linked a weakening sense of smell to Alzheimer’s, doctors in a few larger dementia clinics already have begun to use smell tests in their assessments of elderly patients.

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