Some forgetfulness can be a normal part of aging. However, some people have more memory problems than other people their age. This condition is called mild cognitive impairment, or MCI. People with MCI can take care of themselves and do their normal activities.
MCI memory problems may include
- Losing things often
- Forgetting to go to events and appointments
- Having more trouble coming up with words than other people of the same age
Memory problems can also have other causes, including certain medicines and diseases that affect the blood vessels that supply the brain. Some of the problems brought on by these conditions can be managed or reversed.
Your health care provider can do thinking, memory, and language tests to see if you have MCI. You may also need to see a specialist for more tests. Because MCI may be an early sign of Alzheimer's disease, it's really important to see your health care provider every 6 to 12 months.
At this time, there is no proven drug treatment for MCI. Your health care provider can check to see if you have any changes in your memory or thinking skills over time.
NIH: National Institute on Aging
- (National Institute on Aging)
- (Alzheimer's Association)
- (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research)
Diagnosis and Tests
- (U.S. Preventive Services Task Force) - PDF
Prevention and Risk Factors
- (Alzheimer's Association) - PDF
- (American Academy of Family Physicians) Also in
- (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research) Also in
Statistics and Research
- (American Academy of Neurology) - PDF
- (National Institutes of Health)
Journal Articles References and abstracts from MEDLINE/PubMed (National Library of Medicine)
Find an Expert
- Also in
- Also in