Early diagnosis of dementia is possible due to normal driving habits!
Medical tests and counseling are needed if dementia symptoms are suspected. If you suspect dementia, you will be diagnosed with high-priced questions such as genetic tests, spinal fluid extraction tests, or amyloid analysis of the brain through PET. However, the New York Times reported on the 23rd that various studies are under way to diagnose dementia through normal driving habits or credit card delinquency patterns as research shows that dementia begins years or decades before pathological symptoms.
The research team at the University of Washington, Sai Bayat, is working on the project funded by the National Institute of Health. Researchers are developing biomarkers that detect signs of dementia in drivers’ driving patterns on GPS devices installed in vehicles. The research team tracked driving patterns of 64 elderly people who had Alzheimer’s symptoms, but did not know them, and 75 people who had normal cognitive function for a year.
The team aggressively measured the number of accelerator pedals or brakes, the number of trips above or below the speed limit, the number of sudden vehicle movements, and the driver’s basic “travel space” (number of trips, average distance, unique destinations, night trips). Based on this, 88 percent of the respondents were able to predict whether they had Alzheimer’s disease, according to a study released in June this year. “The findings suggest that observing realistic and cognitively intense behavior can detect early signs of cognitive impairment,” said Dr. Jason Calawish, a geriatric specialist and co-director of the Penn Memory Center.
Similarly, a study predicting Alzheimer’s disease with a credit card delinquency rate was published in February this year. Lauren at the University of Colorado, the United States Public Health and Nicholas team, using a Medicare recipient of more than 80,000 medical records, and consumer credit report analysis. Based on this, the elderly diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease found that the delinquency rate of credit cards was much higher than that of the elderly who did not.
Six years before being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, it was often found that credit cards were overdue twice in a row due to forgetfulness. In addition, in the second half of the year after being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, mortgage interest is overdue for two consecutive years. “This is the first and largest time that small studies have actually used financial data, although they have pointed out the link between self-reported financial mistakes and dementia,” Nicholas said.
In Japan, researchers have developed a machine learning tool that closely examines signs of Alzheimer’s through telephone calls. They compared the tone, intensity, and silence of healthy patients to Alzheimer’s patients using audio files recorded during last year’s interview, and found that these models could predict cognitive status. IBM researchers also found that word patterns and usage predict Alzheimer’s diagnosis later in the written test.
All of these findings are likely to be adopted as early diagnosis data for dementia. However, this approach runs into the problem of privacy. It is also important to consider the rejection of someone to determine whether they have dementia by identifying their behavior patterns. However, experts predict that many people will accept dementia if it is done with the consent of people with anxiety about it.
Emily Rajent, a medical ethicist at the Penn Memory Center in the U.S., investigated what happens when patients and their families become aware of the risk of dementia. According to him, about a third of patients responded to information by changing their health behaviors, developing legal and financial plans, or taking other preparatory measures. “They updated their wills, wrote pre-instructions, and exercised more,” Dr. Rajent said. “In general, there will be more people who think it is very useful to have prior information about dementia.”