To detect memory loss early:

Ask all your patients over 55 about their memory functioning

Also ask a close relative such as the spouse if available. Consider the following issues:

Memory complaints: Memory complaints are indicators of memory problems and are often signs of early cognitive loss. They should be taken seriously.

  • Rationalization: Patients will often rationalize their memory loss by attributing it to normal aging. This is often a sign of a problem and should be identified.
  • Family Concern: Family members’ concern for their loved one’s memory will often arise in the mild to moderate stages of memory-loss. These concerns should be taken very seriously because they are often a sign of progressed disease.
  • Short Screen Insensitivity: Patients with early stage memory loss will often score normally on common physician administered screens. These screens are often insensitive to early stage memory loss. A loss of more than one or two points on a screen should be taken as a warning sign.

Identify physical risk factors for memory disease

These risk factors include:

  • Family history of dementia
  • Cardiovascular Disease
  • Diabetes
  • Head Injury
  • Changes in sleep and/or weight

If the patient is experiencing any of the issues discussed above, especially when combined with a physical risk factor, a referral to MARS Memory-Health Network for a diagnostic assessment is indicated.

Remember, early referral allows for early detection. Early detection provides the patient a distinct treatment advantage.

Refer a Patient

Download the referral form and fax to (910) 791-6226, or call (910) 791-6277
MARS Memory-Health Network