Wakayama Medical University, Japan
Title: A prophylactic daily program for dementia
Toru Itakura has completed his MD at the age of 24 years from Wakayama Medical University and postdoctoral studies from Wakayama Medical University School of Medicine. He is President of Wakayama Medical University and Professor of Department of Neurological Surgery. He has published more than 200 papers in reputed journals
We have developed a new prophylactic program of daily life for dementia. The program contains daily schedule for the elderly. In the morning they read news paper in voice and perform some tasks (simple calculation, coping pictures, Japanese word-chain game and a tongue twister). In the afternoon they walk for 30min and in the evening they write a diary before sleep. 491 people in 19 cities at Wakayama Prefecture in Japan joined the program for 3 months. Ages of the participants varies from 60-93(average 73.8). Once a week they came to the meeting place in the town to see doctors or nurses. Brain functions such as Mini-Mental State Examination (MMES) and other cortical functions) were examined by doctors or nurses before and after the program. Of 491, 470 participants accomplished the program for 3 months. Average of MMSE in all participants was 26.9. 228 participants showed 28-30(average 29.2) scores in MMSE (first group), 157 showed 24-27(average 25.6)(second group) and 52 showed under 23(average 21.3) in MMSE(third group) before starting the program. MMSE score changed to 28.5 in the first group, 27.3 in the second group and 24.3 in the third group after the program. The new prophylactic program in the present study showed the improvement of brain function in the elderly. Especially the elderly mild cognitive impairment showing under 23 in MMSE exhibited normalization in the brain function.