Silent Seizures Found in Two Patients With Alzheimer's Disease

Volume 7    |    Issue 41

What if we've been looking at Alzheimer's all wrong? What if we've missed the underlying cause of this terrible disease? Well, a new discovery suggests silent seizures could be causing the severe memory loss in Alzheimer's.

According to two Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) investigators, they have found silent, seizure-like activity in the hippocampus of two patients with Alzheimer's. The hippocampus is a brain structure that Alzheimer's affects in a significant way. Neither of these patients had a known history of seizures.

What was amazing about these silent seizures is that they could not be detected by standard EEG readings taken on the scalp. They also occurred during sleep, which is when the brain consolidates the preceding day's memories.

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The findings don't prove that the seizures are in fact the cause of Alzheimer's. But they do suggest it's possible we've been looking in the wrong place for answers to this disease.

If seizures are truly involved in Alzheimer's — whether they're the cause or an effect of the disease — then we have at least partial answers for treatment. One of the investigators said, "Our novel finding that networks involved in memory function can become silently epileptic could lead to opportunities to target that dysfunction with new or existing drugs to reduce symptoms or potentially alter the course of the disease."

He's right in suggesting it could lead to new opportunities. But those opportunities are not drugs. I told you recently about the best way to prevent strokes. All you have to do is take 2,000 mg of niacin per day and fish oil, such as Complete Daily Oils. This combination helps protect the brain against stroke. And now, if strokes are causing Alzheimer's, it appears the combination might protect the brain against Alzheimer's.

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