INTRODUCTION: Memory loss is an increasingly frequent reason for consultation in neurology. The aim of this work is to know the current frequency as well as the characteristics and disorders of the patients who come for this reason.
METHODS: We studied 200 patients who came to general neurology consultation due to loss of memory.
RESULTS: 18.47% of the patients who came for the first time to a general neurology consultation did so due to memory loss, this being subjective loss of memory (SLM) in 39% of the cases and referred loss of memory (RLM) in 61% of the cases. The diagnostic groups to which the patients belonged are, in diminishing order, the following: degenerative primary dementia type Alzheimer's disease, mild cognitive impairment, mixed dementia, pure vascular dementia, depressive pseudodementia, attributable to drugs, secondary to systemic disease, non-Alzheimer's type disease primary degenerative dementia, structural reasons, transitory global amnesia and epilepsy. No disease was found in 13% of them, and the generally came due to SLM.
CONCLUSIONS: Frequency of memory loss as a reason for consultation continues to growing. Patients studied due to memory loss, in whom no disease is found, are generally those having SLM. In spite of this, SLM is a good predictor of cognitive deterioration. It is important to systematically study of every patient and consults for loss of memory and to investigate the possible use of drugs or toxics that could alter the memory.
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Reference: Menéndez González M, Garcia-Fernández C, Antón González C, Calatayud MT, González González S, Blázquez Menes B. Memory loss: a reason for consultation. Neurologia. 2005 Oct;20(8):390-4