ZocdocAnswersCould stress, anxiety, depression and OCD cause memory loss and cognitive function loss?

Question

Could stress, anxiety, depression and OCD cause memory loss and cognitive function loss?

My memory loss has been getting worse since i have been diagnosed with POTS. i have GERD/1ST DEGREE AV BLOCK/Gilberts Syndrome. i recently had a fdg18 pet/ct and they said it was normal but then they told me my memory is depressed and well below were it should be for my age "24years of age".that was during a 6 hour neuro test.i take atenelol 6.25 in the morning and 12.25 at night and i take klonopin.15 3xaday. i am wondering could a fdg pet/ct fusion miss dementia or that type of disease ?i have had so many blood test and scans and nothing has come back bad as of today. they're saying it could be a combo of stress/anxiety & depression but i really dont feel thats the case. i have had b vitamins and all kind of things checked for why this might happen at my young age.I also had 2 normal MRI'S withing the passed 12 months.

Answer

This is an important question to continue to discuss with your doctors. It sounds like you have had a fairly significant neurological workup, including multiple radiologic studies of the brain, and full neurologic testing. These tests, if I'm reading your question correctly, have all been normal. Therefore, it seems unlikely that the symptoms you are experiencing are related to a neurological problem in the brain. The caveat, of course, is that dementia is a diagnosis of exclusion, and particularly Alzheimer's dementia may not have any distinctive findings on brain imaging. That being said, you are very young, and a dementia, especially in the absence of a family history of early dementia, would be exceedingly unlikely. I think your doctors may be on to something with their encouragement for you to pursue some psychiatric help. POTS is a very debilitating disorder, and many people with POTS do suffer from anxiety or depression or other mood problems, as a result of living day to day with this disorder. It seems like you have little to loose from consulting with a counselor or a psychiatrist to help you determine what component of your memory and cognitive problems might be due to these issues. Of course, at the same time, keep in contact with your neurologist, cardiologist, and primary care doctor so they can help you with the other issues and evaluated any new symptoms if they emerge.

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