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Memory Disorders Unit

The Memory Disorders Unit at Massachusetts General Hospital provides comprehensive diagnostic and treatment services for Alzheimer's disease and other forms of cognitive impairment, such as Lewy Body dementia, frontotemporal dementia and vascular dementia.
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Memory Disorders Unit: 617-726-1728

About this Program

The Memory Disorders Unit at Massachusetts General Hospital, a specialized care clinic for patients experiencing memory problems, is composed of the Memory Disorders Clinic and the Massachusetts Alzheimer's Disease Research Center (MADRC).

Through the Memory Disorders Clinic, patients receive compassionate, professional care throughout the diagnostic, treatment and follow-up processes. Associated services include:

  • Comprehensive neurologic assessment and follow-up
  • Psychiatric assessment and monitoring as needed
  • Neuropsychological assessment and follow-up
  • Specialized pharmacological interventions for symptom management
  • Genetic counseling for rare cases of inherited memory disorders
  • Support groups and social service consultations for family members

In addition, a unique, collaborative relationship with the MADRC—through which we conduct clinical trials—connects us with cutting-edge Alzheimer's disease research. Supported by the National Institutes of Health, the MADRC performs innovative neuroscience research aimed at uncovering the causes, treatment and prevention of Alzheimer's and related neurodegenerative diseases.

A Specialized Hub of Research & Treatment

John H. Growdon, MD, has served as director of the Memory Disorders Clinic since its inception in 1982. He also headed up the efforts of the MADRC until Bradley T. Hyman, MD, PhD, assumed leadership in April 2006.

Both Dr. Hyman and our renowned geneticist Rudolph Tanzi, PhD, have earned the American Academy of Neurology's prestigious Potamkin Prize for Research in Pick's, Alzheimer's and Related Diseases. The rest of our unit's staff consists of:

  • Board-certified neurologists fluent in English, French, Hebrew and Spanish
  • A board-certified geriatric psychiatrist
  • Neuropsychologists
  • Neuropathologists
  • Biostatisticians
  • A social worker
  • A speech and language therapist
  • Unit and research coordinators
  • Psychometricians
  • Research assistants
  • A genetic counselor

Research OpportunitiesThe MADRC conducts clinical trials involving a variety of neurologic disorders. For information about ongoing studies and the ability to participate, please contact unit coordinator 617-726-1728.Browse online for open trials.

Conditions & Diseases

  • Alzheimer's Disease

    Alzheimer's disease is a progressive, neurodegenerative disease that occurs when nerve cells in the brain die, often resulting in symptoms such as impaired memory, thinking and behavior.

Clinical Trials




Contact Us

Memory Disorders Unit

Wang Ambulatory Care Center

15 Parkman Street8th Floor, Suite 835 Boston, MA 02114
  • Near Public Transit
  • Accessible
  • Phone: 617-726-1728
  • Fax: 617-726-4101

Memory Disorders Coordinators
Phone: 617-726-1728

Mailing Address
Department of Neurology
Memory Disorders Unit
Mailcode: WACC 715
Massachusetts General Hospital
55 Fruit Street
Boston, MA 02114

Patient Frequently Asked Questions 

Download FAQ PDF

What happens in a new patient appointment/what can I expect?
During your new patient appointment you can expect a 75 minute consult consisting of reviewing history, discussion of what your concerns are, mini mental exams, creating a plan for moving forward,  The physician may order more in depth testing such as imaging (PET, MRI, etc) or Neuropsychological testing or a Spinal tap, or simply a follow up- which is determined on a case to case basis.

Why does someone have to accompany me/why can’t I come alone?
Because our patients come to clinic with questions of memory loss we do require someone accompany them to appointments and have a designated contact person.

How often will I have appointments?
After the first appointment the Doctor may order testing and we arrange a follow up to review the results, after that appointment most patients are seen every 6 months.

Will I have testing the same day as my appointment?
No. Typically the tests are scheduled for a later date. You may have blood drawn the same day, but that is typically all that is done the same day.

Should I bring anything?
If you have them, please bring any pertinent records, imaging discs, and a list of current medications.

How long are the appointments?
New patients: 75 minutes, resume 30 minutes
Follow up appointments: 45 minutes

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Memory Disorders Unit: 617-726-1728

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