Diagnose Dementia in 5 Minutes
An EEG (Electroencephalography) sensor connected to two points on the patient's forehead and one ear reads brain waves and transmits the information to the computer. The headband was used on 122 people, which included dementia patients. Significant differences were evident in the brain waves of those with and without dementia. For those with dementia, particularly those with more severe symptoms, the marker that detected the strongest brain waves, shifted drastically to the left of the graph on the computer.
The existing method for diagnosing dementia is by screening test papers, called MMSE, which stands for Mini-Mental State Exam. This exam has an accuracy of 80-percent. However, this latest method of reading brain waves only takes 5 minutes and shows a higher accuracy of 82-percent. When sound stimulation and selective attention tests are added, the accuracy rises to 89-percent.
"MMSE has some limitations. For example, you cannot repeat the same test again and again. So in our case, we use the pre-frontal EEG technique; very simple to screen dementia patients. "This is the first time that a dementia diagnosis model has been developed that has been confirmed to be simpler and more accurate than the screening test paper method.
Researchers are already on the next step of developing the technology to diagnose mild cognitive impairment, which is considered the pre-dementia stage.
If risk groups can be screened earlier on in the onset of dementia, patients can participate in prevention programs sooner, which will eventually reduce the overall number of dementia patients. In collaboration with other institutions across the country, research teams aim to complete a dementia preemptive diagnosis program within the next 5 years.
Source: Arirang News (January 2022)