The characterisation of subjective cognitive decline

Frank Jessen*, Rebecca E. Amariglio, Rachel F. Buckley, Wiesje M. van der Flier, Ying Han, José Luis Molinuevo, Laura Rabin, Dorene M. Rentz, Octavio Rodriguez-Gomez, Andrew J. Saykin, Sietske A.M. Sikkes, Colette M. Smart, Steffen Wolfsgruber, Michael Wagner

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleAcademicpeer-review


A growing awareness about brain health and Alzheimer's disease in the general population is leading to an increasing number of cognitively unimpaired individuals, who are concerned that they have reduced cognitive function, to approach the medical system for help. The term subjective cognitive decline (SCD) was conceived in 2014 to describe this condition. Epidemiological data provide evidence that the risk for mild cognitive impairment and dementia is increased in individuals with SCD. However, the majority of individuals with SCD will not show progressive cognitive decline. An individually tailored diagnostic process might be reasonable to identify or exclude underlying medical conditions in an individual with SCD who actively seeks medical help. An increasing number of studies are investigating the link between SCD and the very early stages of Alzheimer's disease and other neurodegenerative diseases.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)271-278
Number of pages8
JournalThe Lancet Neurology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2020

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