Sense of Smell & Alzheimer's?
Paging Dr. OZ and other experts: Stop promoting the so-called "smell test" as a way of predicting Alzheimer's! A new study shows that although there is a link between the loss of the sense of smell and dementia, cognitive decline is not the only reason people can no longer detect scents. Other medical problems may be the cause. As HealthDay put it: "Misleading reports may create false hope -- or false alarm."
In a news release from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, study author Dr. Gordon Sun, an otolaryngologist, wrote: "A nonspecific association between poor smell function and Alzheimer's dementia is not the same as actually being able to use a smell test to predict Alzheimer's. Unfortunately, this misinterpretation of the research has led to the promotion of these tests by the media and public figures like Dr. Oz.
Dr. Sun went on to say: "This study helps set the record straight about where the evidence currently stands. Understandably, researchers, clinicians and the public are eager for a simple, accurate, and inexpensive way to predict or diagnose Alzheimer's early, but we're not there yet."
Dr. Sun's findings were published online May 10 in the journal Laryngoscope.