Huntington’s disease is a disease that primarily affects the portion of the brain that primarily controls motor control and learning abilities. It is a genetic disorder, and those with parents carrying the Huntington’s disease gene have a 50% chance of inheriting the disorder. People that have the genetic disposition for Huntington’s disease tend to show a number of symptoms, the first generally appearing as short term memory lapses and immediate memory. Long term memory, however, tends to function fine over the progression of the disease.
Memory issues that can stem from Huntington’s disease include poor judgment and decision making skills, difficulties with problem solving abilities, and a short attention span that can deteriorate over time.
Although there is no medical treatment that can lessen the effects of this disease and there is no way to stop or slow the progression of it, it is important that you know your family’s medical history and seek treatment as soon as it is suspected and diagnosed. This will allow you the time and ability to fully understand the disease and prepare you for the issues that will face you as it progresses.
Memory loss is a symptom of many diseases and medical issues, and it should not automatically be considered Huntington’s disease. Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, and other issues such as stress and pregnancy can be the cause of unusual short term memory loss and shorter attention spans. It is imperative that you seek medical help if you are experiencing memory loss symptoms that become increasingly more prominent, and if you experience any other symptoms that may be of concern to you or your primary doctor.