Published: Thu, March 14, 2019
Medical | By

Eye check-up to detect Alzheimer's disease

Eye check-up to detect Alzheimer's disease

Standard optical equipment is not now strong enough to detect the vessels, which are about half the width of a strand of hair, but they did have success using a non-invasive technology called optical coherence demography and geography. The scientists believe the same thing is happening in the brain, with blood vessels disappearing as Alzheimer's take hold. "Like is there just one string to the spider web, or twenty?" Scientists have also studied other changes in the retina that could signal complications in the upper region of the brain, such as the thinning of some of the retinal nerve layers.

The researchers scanned the eyes of 39 people with Alzheimer's disease, 37 people with mild cognitive impairment, which can be a precursor to Alzheimer's, and 133 people without either of those diagnoses. The blood vessel changes may be the result of changes in the brain that signify Alzheimer's disease.

In the US alone, 5.8 million people are living with Alzheimer's dementia, according to 2019 data from the Alzheimer's Association. For every additional 5 years of age beyond 65, the number of people living with Alzheimer's doubles.

The typical process for diagnosing Alzheimer's isn't a fun one.

An Alzheimer's diagnosis is now made based on clinical history and cognitive testing, without relying on imaging studies or blood tests.

"At IBM Research, our mission is to use AI and technology to understand how to help clinicians better detect and ultimately prevent these diseases in their early stages".


In an online publication obtained on Monday, Goudey explained that Alzheimer has been diagnosed to be the cause of dementia - a decline in thinking and person's pattern of behaviour. Similar findings were discovered in 2018.

An early study found that tiny blood vessels that normally form a dense web at the back of the eye become sparser in Alzheimer's patients.

So why may there be poor blood supply to the eyes of people with Alzheimer's? It may get trapped in the deposits of another protein called amyloid that is commonly associated with in the disease.

According to a paper published in 2017, the amyloid-beta located in a person's spinal fluid begins to change and show signs of Alzheimer's decades before the more visible physical ones start presenting themselves.

He also claimed that the learning model could drastically slow down the progression of Alzheimer's disease.

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