Hearing Blog

Can You Tell the Difference Between Hearing Loss and Alzheimer's?

September 1, 2016

Mary is 78, widowed, and lives alone. She definitely isn’t the person her kids and grandkids remember: she doesn’t like to go out, is anxious when she does, frequently seems confused, doesn’t respond to questions, or, when she does, responds with off-topic answers.

John is 71, married, and lives with his 69-year old wife, Irene. John definitely isn’t himself anymore: he doesn’t like to go out, is anxious when he does, frequently seems confused, doesn’t respond to questions, or, when he does, responds with off-topic answers. 

Question: Which of the two is suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, and who “just” has untreated hearing loss? 

Answer: It’s a trick question. Both Mary and John have common symptoms of untreated hearing loss and Alzheimer’s.1 And caregivers — even many doctors — often can’t tell the difference unless a hearing screening is first performed.

Due to this similarity of symptoms and the strong association between these two medical conditions, untreated hearing loss is sometimes misdiagnosed as Alzheimer’s. 

For many patients like Mary and John, it’s possible that untreated hearing loss — not Alzheimer’s — may be causing their symptoms. For a proper diagnosis, experts recommend the patient’s hearing be properly evaluated and treated prior to assuming their condition is Alzheimer’s. 

If you have a loved one with symptoms similar to Mary or John, bring them in for a FREE hearing evaluation and get their hearing test results first, before administering an Alzheimer’s assessment. Contact Us Today.

  1. 1. Source: http://www.hearingreview.com/2001/11/hearing-health-and-alzheimers-disease/



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