Category Archives: Alzheimer’s Disease and related disorders
by Jason Karlawish
“Banking and medicine have little in common. One is for creating and managing wealth, the other for managing health. Yet together they could help detect and fight the growing burden of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias. I call this partnership of banking and medicine whealthcare.
“Thanks to decades-long advances in personal and public health, the average 65-year-old American can expect to live another 19 years. This remarkable progress presents a challenge: Many people might not have enough money to live that long.
“The monthly pension check has gone the way of the electric typewriter and calculator. Retirement funds, if we have any — half of American families have saved less than $5,000 for retirement — are ours to manage, and we really need that cash to pay for our living expenses and most of our long-term care. Aging Americans are also taking on more debt, such as their children’s and grandchildren’s student loans.”
Keep reading this article at STATnews, click here.
“Everyone misplaces things now and then; all of us forget names, to our embarrassment. Occasionally we feel out of sorts and moody and can act out of character. For someone with Alzheimer’s disease, however, these behaviors occur much frequently; they become symptoms of a growing problem, one that can’t be fixed by a good night’s sleep or a relaxing vacation.
“Alzheimer’s disease is devastating – both to the one who is suffering with it and to their loved ones who stand by helplessly and watch. Most of us have been touched in some way by Alzheimer’s – a family member or a friend has been stricken with it – but what really is Alzheimer’s disease? Where does it come from? What can be done about it?
“Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive brain disorder … ” Click here to read more at Geriatric Nursing.org.
“Dementia caregivers | Juggling, delaying, and looking forward Family caregivers play a vital role in providing support to older adults living with dementia and other cognitive impairments.” – University of Michigan National Poll on Aging
ANN ARBOR, MI – “They don’t get pay, recognition, or much of a break. They spend hours a day helping someone who may not even recognize them anymore.
“Now, a new poll gives a glimpse into the lives of the spouses, grown children and other family members and friends who act as caregivers for up to five million Americans with dementia.
“The strain of providing such care for loved ones with Alzheimer’s disease and other conditions came through in the latest results from the National Poll on Healthy Aging, with 78 percent saying caregiving was stressful.
“But the poll also reveals the positive side of caregiving, with 85 percent of family caregivers calling it a rewarding experience. In fact, 45 percent rated it as ‘very rewarding’, compared to 19 percent who called it ‘very stressful’. However, 40 percent of those who called dementia caregiving very stressful also said it was not rewarding.
“Another potential benefit? Perspective. Ninety-one percent of the caregivers said they had thought about their own future care needs because of their experience taking care of someone with dementia.”
Click here to read the article in its entirety and to download the full report.
“MRI scans may help identify early signs of the disease -baranozdemir/Getty”
by Anil Ananthaswamy
“Artificial intelligence can identify changes in the brains of people likely to get Alzheimer’s disease almost a decade before doctors can diagnose the disease from symptoms alone.
“The technique uses non-invasive MRI scans to identify alterations in how regions of the brain are connected.
“Alzheimer’s is a neurodegenerative disease that is the leading cause of dementia for the elderly, eventually leading to loss of memory and cognitive functions.
“The race is on to diagnose the disease as early as possible. Although there is no cure, drugs in development are likely to work better the earlier they are given. An early diagnosis can also allow people to start making lifestyle changes to help slow the progression of the disease.”
Click here to read this New Scientist article in its entirety.
“Despite experiencing symptoms for months before the end of their lives, older adults are spending shorter periods of time in hospice.
“The finding suggests there may be a need for more attention to symptoms and disability for these elderly people—and perhaps earlier hospice admission.
“Researchers looked at information from a study of 562 people, aged 70 and older, who were not disabled when the study began but died over the following 16 years.
“Of these individuals, 244 (43.4 percent) were admitted to hospice during the last year of life. They were slightly older and more likely to have cognitive impairments (problems thinking and making decisions) than older adults who weren’t admitted to hospice.”
Read this article at Futurity.com in its entirety, click here.
The Administration on Aging (AoA) within the Administration for Community Living (ACL) commissioned a supplemental issue of Generations through its National Alzheimer’s and Dementia Resource Center (NADRC) in an effort to advance the establishment and enhancement of dementia-capable home and community-based systems. It is titled Supporting People with Dementia and Their Caregivers in the Community. The Generations supplement is comprised of 18 articles authored by experts in a broad range of dementia care and advocacy topics.
This special issue is dedicated to the delivery of information on a range of topics of significance for people living with dementia and their caregivers. Intended to put dementia care in context, this issue provides insight into evidence-based interventions, person-centered/directed dementia care, underserved and vulnerable populations, and other topics for providing effective home and community-based services.
The Generations publication is FREE.
To learn more about the work that the NADRC is doing, go to www.nadrc.acl.gov
“From Research to Standard Practice: Advancing Proven Programs to Support Family Caregivers of Persons Living with Dementia”
“This report from the AARP Public Policy Institute discusses what is known about effective programs to support family caregivers and emphasizes evidence-based programs for family caregivers of persons living with dementia. Evidence-based programs to help caregiving families are not widely available in communities. This report looks at barriers to scaling up effective programs, such as health care and social services providers’ lack of knowledge about proven caregiver supportive services. Additionally, this report: draws attention to programs that have been shown to improve one or more aspects of the quality of life of family caregivers and can be implemented in local communities; summarizes positive program outcomes; and identifies common characteristics of successful caregiver programs and services. The report provides four recommendations to ensure a broader reach and wider impact for improving the lives of family caregivers and those for whom they care.” – NASUAD Friday Update
Click on the graphic above or here to download the report.
“A family with an astonishing rate of Alzheimer’s disease may harbor a powerful new gene” – STAT News
“LLIJAY, Ga. — Louise Lowman Lee remembers stories about her great-grandmother being put in a fenced area in the backyard, so she could wander safely. She watched her mother patiently care for her grandmother, who lost her reason, inhibitions, and ability to care for herself. Then Alzheimer’s disease gradually eroded the brain of her devoted mother, too.
“But when Lee and two of her sisters brought their mother, Mildred Chastain Lowman, to Emory University in Atlanta in 2006, they weren’t thinking about the family tree. They were just looking for the best possible treatment.
“Dr. Allan Levey asked them to come into a conference room with a genetic counselor and other members of his team. “We’ve been waiting for you,” he said.
“‘We were sort of stunned,’ recalled Sherry Dunn, another sister. ‘We were looking at each other like, “What are they talking about?”’
“Levey explained that he had seen other Chastains in his clinic over the years and had begun studying their pattern of Alzheimer’s inheritance.”
Read this STAT News article in its entirety, click here.
“Lititz woman shares her experience of coming to grips with early-onset Alzheimer’s” – Lancaster Online
“Mary Read, who began a supportive social group for people who are in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease after she received her only early-onset diagnosis, poses with her dog, Princess, in the Lititz home she shares with her husband, George.” – ANDY BLACKBURN | Staff Photographer – LNP – Always Lancaster
“Mary Read had been a nurse for years, using her extensive training to care for patients in nursing homes and doctors’ offices.
“‘But all of a sudden I was forgetting stuff,’ she says. ‘I didn’t understand what the doctor wanted me to do — and it was stuff I’d been doing and suddenly couldn’t do.’
She had trouble calculating a patient’s height from inches to feet, for example, or she would forget how to spell the doctor’s name.
“It was stress, they thought. Maybe a virus attacking her brain.
“‘I was fired from my job,’ she says. ‘I knew something was wrong.’”
Click here to read this Lancaster Online article in its entirety.