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Diagnosed with brain atrophy. How long do I have to live? Why didn't my doctor give me medicines to help this?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2012
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Just wrote to u. I'm fifty and just diagnosed with generalized brain atrophy maybe cerebral I forgot
How long do I have to live?
Why didn't my dr give me meds to help this?
How do I know hod old my brain really is?
Pls help as I get no answers
Posted Mon, 15 Jul 2013 in Brain and Spine
Answered by Dr. Achuo Ascensius 1 hour later
thanks for the query

Brain atrophy is a condition that involves a reduction in the size of the brain. It is generalized when its a reduction in the size of the whole brain.

Brain atrophy is caused by several conditions . Common possible causes of brain atrophy include; epilepsy, traumatic brain injuries, strokes, Alzheimer's disease, multiple sclerosis etc.
With increasing age, some people might observed mild brain atrophy which is senile and not due to any disease. Some people are more prone to that.

The prognosis or outcome could be rapid or slow depending on the underlying cause. In cases where there is an underlying cause, once the cause is treated, the evolution stops and the risk of severe complications is halted thus little or no effect on the duration of life.

Threat to live however results from the complications of brain atrophy and could be fatal if the brain atrophy is progressive. Complications include loss of memory, poor motor functions, loss of basic coordination, aphasia or problem with speech, etc.

In progressive atrophy, the prognosis is fatal and depends on the underlying cause. However, it takes a couple of years say up to five years in some cases before the worse scenario appears.

Treatment of brain atrophy is most often symptomatic and supportive. Without symptoms, treatment is not giving and am sure it is the case with you. If that is the case, it would imply you have just a mild atrophy.

Brain age is determined with an MRI but then in a case like yours where there is an underlying pathology, the age will hardly reflect the real age.

Low dose aspiring helps to prevent clot formation without which small clots may arise in the brain leading to further atrophy.

You need to be followed up by a neurologist who will evaluate the extend of progress, investigate on the possible cause and seek to retard progression.

Hope this answers your query. If you have further query, i will be glad to help.
Best regards

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