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Judgment | Doctor's Diary

Our research shows that impaired judgment is very distressing for families. It is often harder on families than on patients, because impaired judgment means they have lost insight into their own behaviour. Importantly, however, improved judgment is often seen with drug treatments. Unfortunately, as with several other aspects of executive function , this important treatment response is often not captured by the standard ways we test drugs, which is why we are targeting it here- to give people a voice in how the drugs work.

This issue is described in more detail in Rockwood K et al., Potential treatment effects of donepezil not detected in Alzheimer's disease clinical trials : a physician survey. Int J Geriatr Psychiatry. 2004 Oct.19(10):954-60

As people respond to drug treatment by showing better judgment, I have sometimes found that they can be somewhat distressed by the realization that their judgment has been impaired. Many such patients seem to me to actively go through a process of 'rebuilding' their old selves. This issue has been discussed in more detail in: Rockwood K, et al., "The treatment of Alzheimer's disease: success short of cure".

See Also:
Symptom Library > Thinking & Judgment > Unsafe Actions
Symptom Library > Thinking & Judgment > Decision Making
Symptom Library > Everyday Activities > Financial Management
About Dementia > Alzheimer's Disease > Executive Function
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Last updated January 15, 2019
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