What If Your IQ Suddenly Dropped?

by Katie Zavadski

Gerda Saunders got a mid-career PhD and began teaching before noticing the symptoms of microvascular-related dementia:

What unnerves me most in both sets of test results, though, is the drop in my IQ since my last high school test. In my day, South African schools used the Wechsler scale, which is the same as the one Dr. Pompa used. The results are therefore comparable. And the drop in my number precipitous.

Even though I know that IQ is nowadays regarded as too simplistic a measure of anyone’s achievement potential and only tangentially related to life success, my IQ had always mattered to me. It stood for the academic prowess for which I was recognized as long as I can remember. It was something good I knew about myself like my tallness and good skin and ability to stay calm. Now my IQ has become one of those things I have acquired over time that I don’t like: my sagging jowls, my slight limp from an old foot surgery, my wandering attention.

Previous Dish on dementia here.