Alzheimer's

12:30pm

Fri August 24, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Failure Of Lilly Drug Is Latest Alzheimer's Setback

Originally published on Fri August 24, 2012 1:19 pm

A PET scan of the brain of a person with Alzheimer's disease.
U.S. National Institute on Aging Wikimedia Commons

An experimental drug that aimed to slow the development of plaques and help clear them from the brains of Alzheimer's patients failed in two late-stage studies conducted by Eli Lilly & Co., the company said today.

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8:52am

Thu August 16, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Grappling With The Uncertainty Of Alzheimer's Testing

When does it make sense to test a person for the risk of an incurable illness?
Andrei Tchernov iStockphoto.com

Counselors have long cautioned about the downsides of genetic testing for Alzheimer's disease.

For one thing, the current genetic tests for late-onset Alzheimer's — the type that develops after age 60 and is responsible for more than 90 percent of cases — only indicate a probability of getting the disease. It's not definitive. And consumers' ability to buy life insurance or long-term care coverage could be jeopardized by the results.

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2:31pm

Wed July 11, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Gene Mutation Offers Clue For Drugs To Stave Off Alzheimer's

Originally published on Thu July 12, 2012 3:03 pm

A PET scan of the brain of a person with Alzheimer's disease.
U.S. National Institute on Aging via Wikimedia Commons

Finally, there's some good news about Alzheimer's disease.

It turns out that a few lucky people carry a genetic mutation that greatly reduces their risk of getting the disease, an Icelandic team reports in the journal Nature.

The mutation also seems to protect people who don't have Alzheimer's disease from the cognitive decline that typically occurs with age.

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1:26am

Mon May 14, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Alzheimer's Patients Turn To Stories Instead Of Memories

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 4:44 am

TimeSlips is a program based on the idea that storytelling can be therapeutic for people with dementia.
Dick Blau TimeSlips

Ask family members of someone with Alzheimer's or another dementia: Trying to talk with a loved one who doesn't even remember exactly who they are can be very frustrating.

But here at a senior center in Seattle, things are different.

On one recent day, 15 elderly people were forming a circle. The room is typical — linoleum floors, cellophane flowers on the windows, canes and wheelchairs, and walkers lined up against the wall.

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9:51am

Thu April 19, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Staying Active Fends Off Alzheimer's, Even In People Over 80

Originally published on Thu April 19, 2012 10:39 am

This would count. But even washing the dishes helps fend off dementia in old age.
iStockphoto.com

Activity cuts the risk of Alzheimer's disease and slows cognitive decline, even in the very old, according to a new study.

There's been plenty of evidence for the "use it or lose it" theory of brain capacity. But this study is one of the first to show that activity of all sorts benefits people over age 80, even if they're not "exercising."

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