Age-Associated Memory Impairment: A Real Disease Entity?

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The clinical significance and neurobiological basis of normal age-related cognitive decline remains controversial. Terms such as ‘benign senescent forgetfulness’, ‘age-associated memory impairment’ (AAMI) and, more recently, ‘age-associated cognitive decline’ have been proposed to describe memory loss in non-demented individuals as they age. This editorial considers to what extent such terms, particularly AAMI, should be accepted as clinically meaningful. It is concluded that, in the current state of knowledge about the natural history of AAMI and similar entities, widespread treatment with pharmacotherapy is premature.

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