Arizona PBS documentary ‘Curing Alzheimer’s’ explores the globally-felt disease
April 2, 2018
A new documentary on Arizona PBS, “Curing Alzheimer’s,” explains the memory-thieving disease, its history, how it can be detected before symptoms occur and what’s being done to treat and prevent it.
Alzheimer’s robs people of their memory, judgement, reasoning, recognition abilities and performance skills, explains Dr. Eric Reiman, executive director of Banner Alzheimer’s Institute.
It affects over 100 million individuals and costs billions in healthcare. One in four people carry the gene for the disease. It can be detected by looking at a patient’s genetic background or through biological measurements that show signs of developing the disease in the future.
“We can detect the changes starting about 25 years before people develop symptoms,” Reiman says. “Using these measurements and using other subtle memory and thinking changes, we’ve begun to develop ways to evaluate prevention therapies as frequently as every two years.”
Institute director Dr. Pierre Tariot says there are experimental therapies being tried, but these are a tremendous wager. Only about one percent of them show signs of success. However, the only way to know which techniques will succeed is through continued research – which depends in part on the people who are willing to participate in ongoing studies.
If you would like to help end Alzheimer’s and participate in one of these studies, you can sign up at endalznow.org.