In my opinion every caregiver should be investigating and identifying clinical trials for new Alzheimer's drugs. The benefits of participating in a clinical trial are often overlooked.
By Alzheimer's Reading Room
The benefits you will receive while participating in a clinical trial are often overlooked. Here are 5 good examples of what I mean.
1. Imagine This
Your loved one is admitted to a clinical trial for Alzheimer's disease. As it turns out the experimental drug proves effective for the treatment of Alzheimer's. Imagine the legacy your loved one will be leaving - the benefit to society. And, imagine your own joy in knowing you participated directly in the cure for Alzheimer's.
You will receive expert medical care while enrolled in a clinical trial; and, you will be gaining access to new treatments that are not yet available to the public.
2. Perk Number 1 - Significant Memory Testing
Your loved one will receive significant memory testing at the start and throughout the clinical trial process.
For example, the ADAS-cog (Alzheimer's Disease Assessment Scale-cognitive subscale). This test is not administered routinely by your doctor.
ADAS-cog is designed to evaluate cognitive impairment in the assessment of Alzheimer’s. It can only be administered by a person with specialist qualifications and training. It is a very significant test.
You will get the benefit of knowing where your loved one living with Alzheimer's stands right now, and how they perform over the course of the clinical trial. This can be very enlightening.
Experimental Drug Intepirdine (RVT-101) shows promise and is now being investigated in a Phase 3 clinical trial for Alzheimer's
3. Perk Number 2 - A Thorough Medical Work Up
You will get a significant number of free medical test, basically a complete medical work up and ongoing checkup during the course of the clinical trial.
All of these tests results are examined by a neurologist who has been qualified to participate in the clinical trial. And yes, you can ask the neurologist questions.
Keep in mind the neurologist will have substantial knowledge and experience in working with Alzheimer's patients.
The information you will be receiving is invaluable and you get all the tests free of charge. These costs are paid by the sponsor of the clinical trial.
4. The Placebo Effect
Sometimes patients given a placebo treatment will have a perceived or actual improvement in cognition, a phenomenon commonly called the placebo effect or placebo response. This sometimes occurs due to the attention the patient is receiving while enrolled in a clinical trail.
5. You Never Pay - It's All Free of Charge
You never pay anything out of pocket for a clinical trial that is approved by the FDA. Clinical trials are free to the participants. The clinical trial sponsor (usually a pharmaceutical company) is responsible for the payment of all costs. They will usually reimburse you for travel expenses.
If you are interested in identifying a clinical trial, I encourage you to do so. You might benefit from the experimental medication; and, you will be helping to advance the search for a cure or treatment.
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