August 17, 2017

Today’s Top Alzheimer’s News


An August 17, 2017 New America Media article highlighted PET scans, which have made possible affirmative Alzheimer’s diagnosis in living people. It is able to show tau tangles in the brains of living people who appear normal. This technology allows for a new, more objective, biological basis for categorization of cognitive issues versus relying largely on behavioral symptoms or mental-function tests.

An August 17, 2017 Medical Xpress article focused on a simulation showing that health care costs of aging can more than double for families dealing with a loved one with a neurological condition, namely dementia. The vast majority of the financial burden remains with families, around 70%, rather than government insurance programs. According to Eric Jutkowitz of Brown University School of Public Health, “The predominant cost drivers are the loss of independence and the challenging behavioral symptoms such as aggression.”


An August 16, 2017 CBS News video segment and article spotlighted the Music and Memory program, which brings personalized music to nursing home residents at 4,500 sites. Family and friends create the playlist to elicit memories in people with Alzheimer’s and dementia. "Our senses -- sight, smell -- really light up a very small part of the brain. But music lights up many parts of the brain. So even though the brain may deteriorate in certain areas, other areas of the brain is still very much there," said program creator and social worker, Dan Cohen.


According to an August 17, 2017 KSTX Texas Public Radio radio segment, brain health research is a major focus at the University of Texas at San Antonio. A bioscience engineering laboratory is working on a new theory about the cause of Alzheimer’s disease and potential treatments. Understanding neuron death would allow it to be targeted with a drug.


The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) invites you to a special Stakeholder Call on the new Hospice Compare Website. Today, 3–3:30pm (EST). Toll-Free Dial-In Number: 1-800-837-1935. Conference ID: 72262065.