Lansing, Mich. (WLNS) — According to the Alzheimer’s Association, more than 5 million Americans are now living with the disease, and that number is only expected to get higher.
The good news is that new research is providing some hope in the fight against it.
Many Gaither is here for you now with the details.
“Even though we’re in this unusual time, dementia isn’t stopping and neither can we,” Heather Snyder from the Alzheimer’s Association said.
It’s a disease that robs a person of their memory, and eventually their life.
There may soon be a new test for early detection, that wouldn’t be as expensive or invasive as what we have now.
“The idea that we would have a tool that would help us detect multiple brain changes associated with Alzheimer’s in our doctor’s office is really exciting,” Snyder said.
Heather Snyder with the Alzheimer’s Association said scientists at the non-profit’s international conference reported results of multiple studies on advances in blood tests, which may be able to detect changes in the brain 20 years before dementia symptoms start.
“It’s essential for individuals to have an accurate diagnosis as early as possible there’s a lot that they can then do with that information,” Snyder said.
Snyder said the early detection could also help with drug advancement by speeding up the pace of clinical trials. But she cautions the research is still new.
“We need to move these studies forward into the next phase the larger and more diverse trials so we can ultimately get to that place of having a way to identify somebody at the earliest time point and intervene then to stop and slow the progression of this disease,” Snyder said.