Alzheimer’s Disease Can Be Diagnosed 10 to 15 Years Before Its Onset, Researcher SaysBy Shunie Pearl C. Dela Cruz, UniversityHerald Reporter
Possible symptoms of Alzheimer's Disease can be spotted once a person suffered from severe memory loss or dementia. Changes in behavior and cognitive ability immediately follow when brains cells die and connections among them are lost. Although there are medications available, that won't stop the destruction the disease has done to the patient's brain.
Right now, there is no cure available to Alzheimer's Disease. Various scientific studies were conducted by researchers but still there is no known cure. However, newest discovery revealed that Alzheimer's can now be diagnosed 10 to 15 years before its onset. According to Dr. Shawn Kile in a statement, "We used to say you couldn't accurately diagnosed Alzheimer's until an autopsy, not with 100 percent certainty." Dr. Kile headed the PET scan effectiveness in a clinical trial. He also added that the diagnostic tool is expensive when compared to genetic or spinal fluid tests.
This is good news most especially to families who runs history of Alzheimer's in their genes. Just like in the case of the patient David Johnson, 59 years old from Sacramento who lost his father, six uncles and aunts and a cousin to the ravaging disease. Johnson is taking medications to slow down the progress of the disease.
Alzheimer's Disease can be sporadic or familial according to Alzheimer's Australia. Sporadic means it can occur to any individual at any given age but usually at 65 years old while familial is a genetic condition where mutation of several genes happened usually occurred around 40's or 50's. "Neurofibrillary tangles" are plaques and deposits found inside the brain cells that cause dysfunctional synapses in signals between the brain cells. As a result, brain cells are killed due to abnormal transport of food and energy. An estimated 13.8 million people are foreseen to be diagnosed with Alzheimer's in 2050, they belong to the 70 percent of people diagnosed with dementia.