Cell Loss in the Retina may be Early Warning Sign of Dementia

Researchers at the Gladstone Institutes and University of California San Francisco have recently linked cell loss in the retina as an early warning sign for dementia. Gladstone investigator Li Gan, Ph.D. and University of California San Francisco associate professor of neurology Ari Green, MD studied a group of people with a genetic predisposition to frontotemporal dementia, the most common form of the disease. Within this group, a thinning of the retina was noticeable long before cognitive symptoms of the disease.

According to Dr. Gan, this discovery is significant because it may allow “the retina [to] be used as a model to study the development of frontotemporal dementia in neurons. If we follow these patients over time, we may be able to correlate a decline in retinal thickness with disease progression. In addition, we may be able to track the effectiveness of treatment through a simple eye examination.”

Frequent eye examinations are essential for preserving general eye health. They may also allow for early detection of systemic and neurological diseases. Dallas eye doctor Dain Brooks recommends annual visits to ensure optimal vision and early detection of potential ocular and systemic health problems.

To schedule an appointment at our Plano, Texas office, please contact Brooks Eye Associates today.