Discoveries for Testing and Treatments for Alzheimer’s

Posted on May 19, 2022 in

Discoveries with Brain-RN WRITER NC

Statistics are driving research toward new findings

One in three seniors die from Alzheimer’s, the most common form of Dementia.

Today, there are6.5 million cases of Alzheimer’s in America. Discoveries for testing and

treatment for Alzheimer’s will change these figures. The task is to focus our attention on

funding research and educating public awareness. New tests for diagnosis and medications

for clinical trials will increase the chances of a breakthrough for this

disease. The caregiver community and those who experience this debilitating illness

need support and understanding.

There are now over a hundred types of Dementia

Alzheimer’s destroys nerve cells and alters the brain.

These changes interfere with our ability to think and hold memories.

As time goes on, people’s behavior changes; and there is an indication that

something is wrong. Some of the symptoms are:

Confusion

Lack of cleanliness

Memory loss

Agitation

Alzheimer patient medical mental health care concept as a sheet of torn crumpled white paper shaped as a side profile of a human face on an old grungy wood background as a symbol for neurology and dementia issues or memory loss.

“Old Timers” vs. Alzheimer’s disease

In 1906, Alois Alzheimer noted

changes in the brain that control memory loss, language, and behavior. He was

responsible for the early identification of variations in the brain that cause

this disease. About fifty years ago, a senility reference to the elderly was

known as “Old timers” disease. When spoken with a slight accent,

“Old timers” sounds remarkably like Alzheimer’s. Now decades later, the illness

does not only affect old timers. New studies tell us that a small percentage of

people aged 40-60 are diagnosed with memory loss.

Doctors use these procedures for diagnosis

Physical exam

Medical history

Skills test

Blood test

Xray

 New blood test approved by the FDA in 2020

This blood test detects a protein build-up in the brain. Tests

identify the disease even before symptoms begin to show. When the doctor discovers

early signs of the disease, it is possible to treat and prolong the symptoms.

This blood test is a tool for diagnosing Alzheimer’s. Perhaps soon, health

providers and consumers will advocate for insurance coverage.

The earlier the diagnosis, the better the chances are for improvement from treatment

Treatments include medications such as Aricept, Namenda,

and Donepezil. These medications assist in reducing symptoms but are not a cure

for the disease. In addition, education from your physician is a necessary part of the care

plan. Health providers discuss any side effects from the medication and then

help you consider the benefits and the risks. Your doctor may also suggest

starting a healthy diet, behavior monitoring, light exercise, and keeping a

record of sleep habits to help ease the symptoms.

Clinical trials for the FDA approved medication, Aducanumab

Clinical studies indicate that the antibody, Aducanumab

may decrease the protein deposits in the brain. An interrupted decline in the

early stages of the disease may reduce the chances of further illness. Medicare

and Medicaid Services (CMS) approved the medication only

for those in the clinical trials who are in the early stages of Alzheimer’s. Side

effects of the drug can cause dizziness, headaches, and falls for some people.

Questions still exist related to the benefits and the risks of this medication.

In addition, specific testing and X-rays are required for a diagnosis before

approval for the use of Aducanumab in a clinical trial.

And finally, there is some good news!

In March 2022, Congress approved $289 million for research funding for Alzheimer’s. New research

for testing and treatment for Alzheimer’s may change disease outcomes. The task is to focus the

attention on funding research and increasing public awareness. A solid

commitment to public health is necessary to reduce the incidences of this

disease.

The daughter holding hand and takes care mother elderly that is Alzheimer and Parkinson’s patient on dark background.

See further articles with new information about Alzheimer’s and Dementia.