Most people have occasional memory lapses. Often the problem is a normal consequence of stress or aging. However, when memory lapses begin to interfere with everyday function, such as job performance or other independent functions, assistance from health professionals who specialize in the problems of memory loss may be needed. 

Such specialized assistance is available at the Memory Disorders Clinic (MDC) of Duke University Health Systems. The clinic is located within the Duke Health Center at Morreene Road in Durham, NC.

Watch Richard O'Brien, MD, PhD, discusses how he helps patients and caregivers affected by Alzheimer's disease and other memory disorders.

Our neurologists at Duke’s memory disorders clinic specialize in new diagnostic techniques that detect Alzheimer’s disease and other conditions even before symptoms begin. We also diagnose and treat a wide range of memory problems including mild cognitive impairment, post-traumatic memory loss, amnesia, dementia, and normal pressure hydrocephalus (NPH). We help caregivers access the care their loved ones need.

We work closely with you, the caregiver, to discuss your loved one’s diagnosis, care and treatment. We offer family support programs and access to a variety of specialists including social workers and geropsychologists, who provide psychological services to older adults. We are here to help you care for your loved one.

Read more about our patient services

Our research faculty in the division of Translational Brain Sciences conduct basic science investigations in Alzheimer's disease and related disorders.

These investigations use genetic, biochemical, and cellular approaches to understand the pathogenesis of these disorders. The now well-known apolipoproteinE (ApoE) gene associated with Alzheimer's disease was discovered in our neuroscience laboratories and remains a major focus of ongoing research investigations.

Our division of Memory Disorders is part of the Duke and the University of North Carolina Alzheimer’s Disease Research Collaborative (Duke/UNC ADRC), which brings together leading researchers in Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias across two major research institutions.

Together, the Duke/UNC ADRC aims to catalyze and support research, innovations in clinical care and academic work force development (with North Carolina Central University, East Carolina University and UNC Pembroke as partner institutions) in this field. Its ultimate purpose is to reduce the burden of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias regionally and nationally. The outstanding scientific environment at both institutions enables novel research to identify effective methods of prevention and/or early intervention, and to reduce racial and urban/rural disparities associated with dementia. Read more.

Our faculty are members of the Duke University and the University of North Carolina Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center (Duke/UNC ADRC), which brings together leading researchers in Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias across two major research institutions.

As an NIH-funded center of excellence, the Duke/UNC ADRC catalyzes and supports research innovations in clinical care and academic work force development (with North Carolina Central University, East Carolina University and UNC Pembroke as partner institutions) in this field. Our ultimate purpose is to reduce the burden of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias regionally and nationally. The outstanding scientific environment at both institutions enables novel research to identify effective methods of prevention and/or early intervention, and to reduce racial and urban/rural disparities associated with dementia. Read more about the Duke/UNC ADRC here.

Our Memory Disorders faculty are activem members of the Duke University and the University of North Carolina Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center (Duke/UNC ADRC), which brings together leading researchers in Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias across two major research institutions.

As an NIH-funded center of excellence, we aim to catalyze and support research, innovations in clinical care and academic work force development (with North Carolina Central University, East Carolina University and UNC Pembroke as partner institutions) in this field. Our ultimate purpose is to reduce the burden of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias regionally and nationally. The outstanding scientific environment at both institutions enables novel research to identify effective methods of prevention and/or early intervention, and to reduce racial and urban/rural disparities associated with dementia.

Latest News

Members of the Duke Neurology Department got the new year off to a fast start this January, contributing to 10 new peer-reviewed journal articles.

The final month of 2022 saw the release of 12 new peer-reviewed journal articles written or co-written by members of the Duke Neurology Department.

The Duke Neurology Department continued to grow and advance its missions of patient care, research, and training the next generation of neurology providers in 2022.

Duke Health leadership launched Translating Duke Health in 2017 as a multi-disciplinary, multi-year commitment to capitalize on Duke’s collective strengths in research, clinical care, and population health to address major health challenges.