The word dementia is used to describe a group of symptoms – often including memory loss, confusion or mood changes that are severe enough to affect day-to-day life. There are many causes of dementia, with Alzheimer’s disease the most common.

What is Early-onset Alzheimer's?

The word dementia is used to describe a group of symptoms – often including memory loss, confusion or mood changes that are severe enough to affect day-to-day life. There are many causes of dementia, with Alzheimer’s disease the most common.

Although often thought of as a disease of older people, around 5% of people with Alzheimer’s disease are under 65. This is called early-onset or young-onset Alzheimer’s. It usually affects people in their 40s, 50s and early 60s.

Alzheimer’s is the most common cause of early-onset dementia. However, there are other causes in younger people such as frontotemporal dementia and vascular dementia. Contact us for more information on these types of dementia.

If you are worried about yourself or someone else who is showing symptoms of dementia, talk to your doctor. They will be able to rule out other health problems such as depression or anxiety that may cause similar symptoms in younger people. They will also be able to refer you to a specialist for other tests if necessary.

Early-onset Alzheimer's

This leaflet aims to give an introduction to early-onset Alzheimer’s disease. It’s for anyone who might be worried about themselves or somebody else.

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Alzheimer’s Research UK has a wide range of information about dementia. Order booklets or download them from our online form.

This information was updated in March 2020 and is due for review in March 2022. It does not replace any advice that doctors, pharmacists or nurses may give you. Please contact us if you would like a version with references.

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Dementia Research Infoline

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