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Sharp Health News

Memory loss? There’s a screening for that.

Aug. 8, 2018

Memory loss? There’s a screening for that.

Alzheimer’s disease is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States. While embracing a healthy lifestyle is a great way to help prevent its onset, a short screening of one’s memory could also aid in early detection of memory loss, which is not a normal part of aging.

Sharp Mesa Vista Hospital and Alzheimer’s San Diego have partnered to provide the San Diego community with free memory screenings.

Dr. Michael Plopper, medical director of clinical trials at Sharp Mesa Vista Hospital, explains how these screenings can be a great tool for anyone who is concerned about memory loss.

What is the purpose of a memory screening?
The screening is a fairly simple wellness tool to evaluate a person’s memory and cognitive function to see if there are any issues. Immediate results could tell us if a more in-depth evaluation is needed. These screenings can also provide reassurance to a person who is concerned about changes in memory.

Who are good candidates for the screenings?
Good candidates would be anyone who has a concern about memory, although we typically see adults who are age 50 or older, or someone who has a family history of Alzheimer’s disease.

What can someone expect during the screening?
During the session, an individual will sit down with mental health professionals from Sharp Mesa Vista and Alzheimer’s San Diego who will ask them about their memory or health concerns and discuss any medications they may be taking. The person will undergo specific testing of memory and other brain functions. We also give participants information on brain health, treatable causes of memory loss and confusion, as well as baseline results.

What happens with screening results? We encourage participants to see their medical provider and visit Sharp Mesa Vista’s Clinical Research Center for a free, in-depth evaluation and explore clinical trials. Sharp Mesa Vista is the industry leader in providing clinical trials for persons with memory disturbances, as well as individuals diagnosed with early Alzheimer’s disease.

Memory screenings are available on the third Thursday of every month at Alzheimer’s San Diego in Kearny Mesa. If you are interested in scheduling a memory screening, please call Alzheimer’s San Diego at 858-492-4400.

For the news media: To talk with Dr. Michael Plopper about memory screenings for an upcoming story, contact Erica Carlson, senior public relations specialist, at

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