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What is the difference between Alzheimer’s and dementia?



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Image: Forschungszentrum Jülich

In colloquial speech, the terms Alzheimer’s disease and dementia are often used interchangeably. But while Alzheimer’s is the most common form of dementia (accounting for around 60 percent of cases), not all dementia is Alzheimer’s. Dementia is a general term for the impairment of cognitive functions such as thinking, memory and orientation due to brain damage. There are many different forms of dementia, each caused by a different disorder or condition.

Saskia Blank from the Ideas 2020-Team answered this question in collaboration with Sonja Jülich-Abbas, deputy of the Head of “Press and Public Relations” at the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases.