Wednesday, October 31, 2007

New study says a seventh of elderly Americans suffer from dementia


A new study suggests that one out of seven Americans over the age of 70 has dementia.

Researchers conducted individual assessments of 856 people drawn from an earlier study that included a representative sample of Americans over 50.As they report in the latest issue of Neuroepidemiology, the findings suggest that 3.4 million Americans aged 71 or older suffer from some sort of dementia, including Alzheimer's. This is about 30% higher than earlier estimates.

McCain Likes Retail Clinics, Drug Imports and Tax Credits


Its too bad we can't clone some of these candidates into one great candidate.
clipped from blogs.wsj.com
Like many Republicans, McCain is pushing for new tax credits that would put individual insurance on a more equal footing with employer-sponsored insurance
He wants safety protocols that would allow importation of cheaper drugs from foreign countries, a possible cost-saving measure that has been loudly opposed by the pharmaceutical industry. He’d also support clinics in retail outlets, which have been spreading rapidly despite objections from many doctors’ groups.
“I don’t think there should be mandates for health insurance.”
“I’m not gonna force Americans to do it. I don’t think that’s the role of government….If we bring down health-care costs more Americans are going to be able to afford it.”
“We’re going to have to have a Medicaid fund that will provide those people with sufficient funds to get health insurance.”
“You will be gauged and paid by how” well the patient fares.
“We should not be paying for medical errors.”
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Thursday, October 25, 2007

Evercare Unveils Details Of Nation's First Alzheimer's Disease Special Needs Plan In Phoenix


I am looking forward to learning more about this program. I will investigate when this program might be coming to South Florida.
Evercare, one of the nation's, and Arizona's, largest health care coordination programs, today unveiled the details of the first-ever Medicare Advantage Special Needs Plan designed exclusively for people with Alzheimer's disease and chronic dementia. Residents of Maricopa County, Ariz. will be the first in the country to have access to this innovative health plan with tailored benefits and services, including special prescription drug coverage and the Alzheimer's Association Safe Return program. Evercare Care Managers will collaborate with
memory disorder specialists from the prestigious Phoenix-based Banner Alzheimer's Institute, with the goal of enhancing Evercare's innovative model of care. Evercare Health Plan for People with Alzheimer's Disease and Related Dementia provides benefits that go beyond traditional Medicare coverage.

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Alzheimer's health plan debuts (Medicare)


We are keeping an eye on this new Medicare Program. You should consider joining our mailing list if you would like to be kept up to date on this program as it expands.

Alzheimer's sufferers in the Valley will have access to the nation's first Medicare health plan designed specifically for them.

Evercare, a subsidiary of United Health Group, Wednesday is unveiling its Medicare Advantage Special Needs Plan, which includes coverage for prescription drugs and the Alzheimer's Association Safe Return program.


Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Alzheimer's robs memory faster in the educated


clipped from www.msnbc.msn.com

WASHINGTON - Having more years of formal education delays the memory loss linked to Alzheimer's disease, but once the condition begins to take hold, better-educated people decline more rapidly, researchers said on Monday.

Their study, published in the journal Neurology, tracked memory loss in a group of elderly people from New York City's Bronx borough before they were diagnosed with Alzheimer's or another form of old-age dementia.

Every year of education delayed the accelerated memory decline that precedes dementia by about 2-1/2 months, according to the researchers at Yeshiva University's Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York.

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Friday, October 19, 2007

Discovery suggests new ways to treat Alzheimer's cause, not just symptoms


For some time, scientists have blamed Alzheimer's disease on a small molecule called amyloid beta protein (A beta) that leaves large gummy deposits in the brain. Recent studies suggest that these A beta proteins stick together to form floating toxic clumps that kill brain cells. Now, UCLA scientists have identified a tiny loop in A beta as the likely culprit behind the adhesion process.

The UCLA team discovered that gene mutations in A beta increase the loop's flexibility, enabling it to join easily with loops from other A beta proteins and form clumps. The loop also appears in the region of the protein that regulates how — and how much — A beta is made.

Principal investigator David Teplow, professor of neurology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, is available for interviews.


Source and Additional Information about the Discovery UCLA Medical School




Sunday, October 14, 2007

Blood Test May Predict Alzheimer's Disease



Alzheimer's experts are optimistic that a new type of blood test could one day allow doctors to accurately predict one's risk of developing the degenerative disease.
While prior research has suggested that imaging techniques and tests on spinal fluid could also be used to predict the risk of Alzheimer's, a study in published in the current issue of the journal Nature Medicine suggests that this goal could be accomplished with a simple blood draw.
Such a test, if proven effective, would be less costly than imaging techniques and less invasive than a spinal tap.

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Stanford scientists find blood test to ID Alzheimer's


This is an important development for those genetically predisposed to Alzheimer's.

NEW YORK, Oct. 14 (UPI) -- Researchers Sunday reported progress on development of a blood test that can diagnose Alzheimer's disease, perhaps years before memory loss sets in.

The researchers, mainly based at California's Stanford University, said the test was about 90 percent accurate in distinguishing the blood of people with Alzheimer's from the blood of others, The New York Times reported. The scientists said the test was about 80 percent accurate in determining which patients with mild memory loss would go on to develop Alzheimer's disease during the next two to six years.

The results were published online in the journal Nature Medicine.

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Saturday, October 13, 2007

Patients Can't Recall Their Medications To Tell Doctors


I can tell you from experience, my mother could not name the drugs she was taking and she was not taking them as prescribed. I investigated this when her behavior first started to change and show signs of dementia. Why is this important? Is my belief that if my mother had been taking her hypertension drugs as prescribed she would be much healthier today and the onset and development of her Alzheimer's might have been delayed.

New research from Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine has found that nearly 50 percent of patients taking antihypertensive drugs in three community health centers were unable to accurately name a single one of their medications listed in their medical chart. That number climbed to 65 percent for patients with low health literacy.


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Bob DeMarco is an Alzheimer's caregiver and editor of the Alzheimer's Reading Room. The Alzheimer's Reading Room is the number one website on the Internet for advice and insight into Alzheimer's disease. Bob taught at the University of Georgia, was an executive at Bear Stearns, the CEO of IP Group, and is a mentor. He has written more than 700 articles with more than 18,000 links on the Internet. Bob resides in Delray Beach, FL.

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Cautious Optimism For New Alzheimer's Medications, Reports The Harvard Mental Health Letter


Alzheimer's disease takes a long time to develop, which suggests that it may be
possible to design drugs that work early in the disease process, to delay the
start of symptoms. Over the past decade, researchers have been testing a number
of such "disease-modifying" drugs that target the earliest biological changes in
Alzheimer's, reports the October 2007 issue of the Harvard Mental Health
Letter. None of the disease-modifying drugs now in development will cure
Alzheimer's. But a number of them are currently in phase III clinical trials,
the last stage before the FDA will consider approving the drugs for sale. Media
interest has already begun to intensify. In June, for example, the AARP Bulletin
trumpeted on its cover: "Finally, new drugs offer real hope for reversing the
disease."

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Bob DeMarco is an Alzheimer's caregiver and editor of the Alzheimer's Reading Room. The Alzheimer's Reading Room is the number one website on the Internet for advice and insight into Alzheimer's disease. Bob taught at the University of Georgia, was an executive at Bear Stearns, the CEO of IP Group, and is a mentor. He has written more than 700 articles with more than 18,000 links on the Internet. Bob resides in Delray Beach, FL.

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Saturday, October 6, 2007

Balance Problems an Early Clue for Alzheimer's?


Balance problems may be an early sign that someone has a dementia such as Alzheimer's. Research has found physical symptoms, such as problems with walking and balance, a weak hand grip (a later sign) are associated with an increased risk of developing dementia and Alzheimer's disease.

The study tested for physical functioning using a number of tests. It was found that people with good physical performance scores at the beginning of the investigation were three times less likely to develop dementia than those with poor scores.

Higher levels of physical function may be associated with a delayed onset of
dementia and Alzheimer's disease.
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Bob DeMarco is an Alzheimer's caregiver and editor of the Alzheimer's Reading Room. The Alzheimer's Reading Room is the number one website on the Internet for advice and insight into Alzheimer's disease. Bob taught at the University of Georgia, was an executive at Bear Stearns, the CEO of IP Group, and is a mentor. He has written more than 700 articles with more than 18,000 links on the Internet. Bob resides in Delray Beach, FL.

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Friday, October 5, 2007

Cholesterol Metabolism Links Alzheimer's Disease



clipped from www.sciencedaily.com
Science Daily Although the causes of Alzheimer's disease are not completely understood, amyloid-beta (A-beta) is widely considered a likely culprit -- the "sticky" protein clumps into plaques thought to harm brain cells.
But now researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have uncovered evidence strengthening the case for another potential cause of Alzheimer's. The finding also represents the first time scientists have found a connection between early- and late-onset Alzheimer's.
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Bob DeMarco is an Alzheimer's caregiver and editor of the Alzheimer's Reading Room. The Alzheimer's Reading Room is the number one website on the Internet for advice and insight into Alzheimer's disease. Bob taught at the University of Georgia, was an executive at Bear Stearns, the CEO of IP Group, and is a mentor. He has written more than 4,600 articles with more than 336,000 links on the Internet. Bob resides in Delray Beach, FL.

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Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Can a dedicated nun hold key to beating Alzheimer's?


clipped from news.scotsman.com

NUNS and monks who never miss choir practice and work hard in their religious studies may pave the way to a greater understanding of Alzheimer's disease.

A study of almost 1,000 Catholic nuns, priests and monks over 12 years revealed that those who were most conscientious had a lower risk of developing the debilitating brain disease. It is thought that being conscientious might make people better able to cope with plaques that build up in the brain, leading to the disease.

The latest study followed a group of nuns, monks and priests from across the United States. They were chosen as a group as they were deemed more likely to be willing to take part in a study that might help others in the future, but not themselves.

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Bob DeMarco is an Alzheimer's caregiver and editor of the Alzheimer's Reading Room. The Alzheimer's Reading Room is the number one website on the Internet for advice and insight into Alzheimer's disease. Bob taught at the University of Georgia, was an executive at Bear Stearns, the CEO of IP Group, and is a mentor. He has written more than 700 articles with more than 18,000 links on the Internet. Bob resides in Delray Beach, FL.

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Conscientious people may not develop Alzheimer's


clipped from blogs.usatoday.com

A new study suggests people who have a "purposeful personality" are less likely to develop Alzheimer's disease.

Reuters says those who "lead a good clean life" are less prone to developing dementia in later life, according to the Rush University Medical Center study. "When the researchers took into account a combination of risk factors, including smoking, inactivity and limited social connections, they still found that the dutiful people had a 54 percent lower risk of Alzheimer's compared to people with the lowest scores for conscientiousness," the Associated Press reports.

USA TODAY has an interactive graphic with more about the disease.

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Bob DeMarco is the editor of the Alzheimer's Reading Room and an Alzheimer's caregiver. Bob has written more than 1,300 articles with more than 9,000 links on the Internet. Bob resides in Delray Beach, FL.

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