Age Matters Clinic


Toronto Geriatric Assessment and Memory Clinic

Men Lose Memory Faster Than Women

Memory loss is a serious issue. It becomes more troublesome as men and women get older. Short and long term loss of memory can make every day tasks difficult to perform, create embarrassing situations, and in extreme cases, even rob you of your personality. No wonder so many studies are focused on memory loss. What causes it, how to prevent it, and how to deal with the effects. One of the latest studies? It all had to do with memory loss and gender.

Published in JAMA Neurology, the research study found that memory fades faster in men than in women. They discovered that brain volume in both men and women started to decline once they passed the age of thirty. However, it is what happened after that point that is now causing a stir. The lead author of the study, Clifford Jack, found that after the age of 40, the memory of men worsened much faster than that of women. It was also found that the memory portion of the brain shrinks faster in men than women. These revelations have piqued the interest of scientists and the general public alike.

The study itself looked at 1246 normal adults between the ages of 30 and 90 years old. Memory tests and brain scans were performed between 2006 and 2014. During that time the researchers looked for amyloid proteins - which are typically linked to the development of Alzheimer's disease. It was then that they noticed the difference between men and women's memory function over time. Additionally, they discovered that people with Alzheimer's genes did not develop abnormal amyloid build-up until after the age of 70.

So, what does this really mean? This study is not just interesting because of the findings related to gender. What it tells us about Alzheimer's is most compelling. Could it be? Memory loss is entirely separate to the development of Alzheimer's disease. In the past, experts in the field believed that memory loss or forgetful moments were tell tale signs or links to the disease. However, this study proves that memory loss will happen to us all. Male or female, Alzheimer's disease or not, we will all experience some form of memory loss as we age.

According to Clifford Jack, "... our findings suggest that memory actually declines in almost everybody, and well before there is any amyloid deposition in the brain." That means regardless of whether Alzheimer's disease will or will occur, there is already pre-existing memory loss. In fact, it is pretty universal. The later development of amyloid proteins indicates that they are not the only reason memory worsens. It may still be a factor - but that build up is not the only explanation. Thanks to this new information, further research can be done on the topic.

It is an interesting fact. Men and women experience memory loss at different rates. Time will tell why this is - and what can be done to prevent this decline. However, the information that truly stood out? It had to do with the development of amyloid proteins in the brain. More specifically, what this means about our understanding of Alzheimer's, future research projects, and the well being of those living with the disease.

Are you looking for information about memory loss? Contact Age Matters Clinic at: 647-268-0620. We understand how to improve the life of Alzheimer's and memory loss patients.