If a family member has Alzheimer’s disease, will I get it, too?

Just because a family member has Alzheimer’s disease does not mean that you will get it, too. There is a rare form of Alzheimer’s disease, called early-onset familial Alzheimer’s, which is inherited. Early-onset familial Alzheimer’s occurs in people between the ages of 30 and 60 and is caused by mutations, or changes, in certain genes. Most cases of Alzheimer’s are late-onset. They occur after age 60 and usually have no obvious family pattern. However, genetic factors do appear to increase a person’s risk of developing late-onset Alzheimer’s.

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