Alzheimer’s disease destroys brain cells over time and currently there is no cure.
The FDA has approved 5 drugs for treating Alzheimer’s symptoms. While these drugs may slow the progression of the disease or temporarily improve symptoms such as memory loss – they do not stop the disease or cure it. Brain cells will continue to die and the disease will progress eventually leaving the person unable to care for themselves or needing full time care in a community like The Memory Center.
So why aren’t there more medications to prevent Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia?
Alzheimer’s is a very complex disease that still isn’t fully understood by scientists. The disease is known to run in families and may be tied to certain lifestyle factors, but the exact cause remains unknown. More research is needed to determine how genetics, lifestyle and environmental factors contribute.
There are many organizations performing research and clinical trials to understand more about Alzheimer’s and how certain medications may help slow or stop the decline. The video below from the National Institute on Aging details what a clinical trial is and some exciting new trials underway.
Who Participates in Clinical Trials?
Volunteers from all age groups and walks of life can participate in a clinical trial. The specific criteria are determined by the type of trial and research being performed. For Alzheimer’s related trials people with, and without, symptoms of the disease are needed to help scientists discover and further a treatment.
The Alzheimer’s Association TrialMatch program matches interested volunteers with clinical trials in their area, or even online. TrialMatch is another way you can help in the fight against Alzheimer’s disease. Read more about the program or sign up online and help us get one step closer to discovering why Alzheimer’s occurs and what therapies or medications may prevent it.
In August of 2016 The Alzheimer’s Association issued a $7 million dollar challenge to scientists to develop new trials and medications to help treat this devastating disease.
Read more about The Memory Center programs dedicated caring for those living with Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia or activities to help beat the boredom and agitation often associated with Alzheimer’s.