Moors Murderer Ian Brady's "worst nightmare" is coming true with the onset of dementia symptoms, it has been claimed.

Brady was reportedly refusing to take medical tests that would confirm he had dementia because he cannot bear the idea that he has the degenerative brain condition.

According to a confidante of the five-time child killer, the dawn of dementia had Brady "terrified".

His mental health advocate, Jackie Powell, lifted the lid on Brady's unfolding nightmare inside the high-security Ashworth psychiatric hospital, in Liverpool.

The claim that he may have early-stage dementia was bad news for the family of one of Brady's young victims, Keith Bennett.

If the condition is confirmed in Brady then it will almost certainly extinguish any chance of him revealing where Bennett's body is buried - because he cannot remember.

Brady and accomplice Myra Hindley never revealed where they buried Bennett after torturing and killing him in 1964.

Powell told the Mirror: "Brady has to be in control and getting dementia is his worst nightmare.

"No one who meets him could ever deny that he had a very sharp mind.

"He is highly intelligent and insists on dealing with things on his own terms. He never wants to expose his feelings so he is terrified of losing his self-control.

"Everything he does has always been very calculated and he could not imagine anything worse than his own mind slipping away from him.

"He'd never admit it, but I believe he is frightened about what is happening to him.

"He has withdrawn into himself completely. The glint has gone out of his eyes and he just seems to be waiting to die."

Brady has been locked up since 1966 for killing five children with Hindley in Manchester between 1963 and 1965.

He has been involved in a one-man struggle against the prison authorities for much of his sentence and his trump card has long been his refusal to reveal the location of Bennet's body.

Brady is in poor health. In 2012 he was brought back to life by officers against his will after he had a fit.

Powell said: "His mother lived into her 90s but if he had his way he would certainly want to die before he loses his mind completely."