Fast Five Quiz: Memory Loss and Cognitive Impairment

Helmi L. Lutsep, MD


April 28, 2021

Memory loss can be associated with the use of certain medications and head injuries. Beyond conditions associated with dementia, other health concerns can lead to memory impairment. These include some mental health disorders, alcoholism, thyroid conditions, and brain diseases (eg, tumor, infection).

Vitamin B12 deficiency has been associated with various neuropsychiatric manifestations. These include recent memory loss with reduced attention span and otherwise normal cognition, depression, hypomania, paranoid psychosis with auditory or visual hallucinations (megaloblastic madness), violent behavior, personality changes, blunted affect, and emotional lability. Unfortunately, although some studies have found that low vitamin B12 levels may result in memory loss, no substantial evidence has demonstrated that supplementation in individuals with sufficient levels can help improve memory or prevent such conditions as Alzheimer's disease.

Read more about vitamin B12–associated neurologic diseases.


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