Assessment and Management of Memory Complaints in Older Adults
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Expires on May 01, 2026
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Credit Offered
1.5 CME Credits
1.5 COP Credits

Currently, over 6 million Americans have Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias and the number is expected to double by 2050. It is estimated that an additional 5 million Americans have mild neurocognitive impairment. With the aging of the population, psychiatrists are likely to see more older patients who are concerned about their memory. Subjective memory decline may be an early sign of a serious cognitive disorder, but may also occur due to other conditions. Teasing out the underlying causes of memory concerns can be challenging, and requires a multi-step assessment. In this session, geriatric psychiatrists, Dr. Susan Lehmann and Dr. Brent Forester will discuss the office approach to the assessment of memory complaints in older adults. Dr. Lehmann will discuss ways that psychiatrists can differentiate normal changes in memory with aging from those seen in mild neurocognitive impairment and in late life depression and other psychiatric disorders, such as late-life depression. She will review the appropriate office work-up of cognitive complaints, including cognitive and laboratory testing to rule out “treatable” causes. Dr. Lehmann will also discuss the differential diagnosis of memory complaints, focusing on how to distinguish memory concerns due to psychiatric disorders from the most common major neurocognitive disorders. Dr. Forester will discuss how understanding the underlying pathology of Alzheimer’s Disease and other dementias is leading to better treatment strategies. He will review current best practices for the pharmacologic treatment of cognitive impairment in dementia. Dr. Forester will also discuss practical strategies for clinicians to share with patients to maintain good brain health and prevent cognitive decline.


Recorded webinar, non-interactive, self-paced distance learning activity.

This presentation was recorded at the American Psychiatric Association Annual Meeting 2022.

Learning Objectives

  • Identify key differences between cognitive changes associated with normal aging and those that may signal a cognitive disorder
  • Discuss the appropriate office work-up of subjective cognitive complaints
  • Describe differences in presentation between common types of dementia (major neurocognitive disorders)
  • Discuss the FDA-approved pharmacologic agents available for treatment of cognitive symptoms in dementia
  • Describe evidence-based strategies for maintaining brain health and preventing cognitive decline

Target Audience


Estimated Time to Complete

Estimated Duration: 90 minutes
Begin Date: May 1, 2023
End Date: May 1, 2026

How to Earn Credit

Participants who wish to earn AMA PRA Category 1 Credit ™ or a certificate of participation may do so by completing all sections of the course including the evaluation. A multiple choice quiz is provided based on the content. A passing score of 60% must be achieved. Retakes are available for the test. After evaluating the program, course participants will be provided with an opportunity to claim hours of participation and print an official CME certificate (physicians) or certificate of participation (non-physicians) showing the event date and hours earned.

Continuing Education Credit

In support of improving patient care, the American Psychiatric Association is jointly accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME), the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), and the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), to provide continuing education for the healthcare team.


The APA designates this enduring activity for a maximum of 1.25 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit ™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Faculty and Planner Disclosures

The American Psychiatric Association adheres to the ACCME’s Standards for Integrity and Independence in Accredited Continuing Medical Education. Any individuals in a position to control the content of a CME activity — including faculty, planners, reviewers or others — are required to disclose all relevant financial relationships with ineligible entities (commercial interests). All relevant conflicts of interest have been mitigated prior to the commencement of the activity.

Program Presenters

  • Susan Lehmann, MD, Johns Hopkins. Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests.
  • Brent Forester, MD, MSc, Chief of Geriatric Psychiatry, McLean Hospital. Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests.
  • Art Walaszek, MD, University of Wisconsin. Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests.

Program Planners

  • Jacqueline Maus Feldman, M.D., Chairperson, Scientific Program Committee, Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests.
  • Robert O. Cotes, M.D., Vice-Chairperson, Scientific Program Committee, Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests. 
  • Uchenna Okeye, M.D., Vice-Chairperson, Scientific Program Committee, Reports no financial relationships with commercial interests. 

Accessibility for Participants with Disabilities

The American Psychiatric Association is committed to ensuring accessibility of its website to people with disabilities. If you have trouble accessing any of APA’s online resources, please contact us at 202-559-3900 for assistance.

Technical Requirements

This internet-based CME activity is best experienced using any of the following:

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  • Internet Explorer 11+

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