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OK, let’s start with some basic brain anatomy. The brain has a few regions - the most obvious is the cerebrum, which is divided into two cerebral hemispheres, each of which is divided into four lobes: the frontal, parietal, temporal, and occipital lobe.
The frontal lobe controls movement, and our personalities, it also handles our ability to count and spell, and make decisions.
The parietal lobe processes sensory information, which lets us locate exactly where we are physically and guides movements in a three dimensional space.
Finally there’s the occipital lobe which is primarily responsible for processing visual information.
All the cells in the body need oxygen - and that’s particularly relevant for neurons, which can only function in aerobic conditions, meaning with constant supply of oxygen.
Neurons also don’t have long term energy stores, so they need a constant supply of glucose to keep working.
Once they reach the base of the brain, these arteries join to form a ring, called the circle of Willis, which then branches off into smaller and smaller arteries, the smallest being the perforating arteries, that eventually supply the entire brain with oxygen and glucose.
Vascular dementia is a progressive loss of brain function caused by multiple strokes, or infarcts, which in turn are caused by atherosclerosis of the vessels supplying the brain. Symptoms can vary depending on the affected regions of that brain but may include problems with memory, thinking, and judgment, as well as difficulty with daily tasks and changes in mood or personality. Treatment for vascular dementia may include medications to manage symptoms and lifestyle changes to reduce risk factors for stroke, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and smoking.
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