Monday, October 11, 2010

The Scope of Coping with Alzheimer's

A news item widely circulated over the weekend reintroduces the need for new Alzheimer's guidelines to improve early diagnoses.

A Reuters article puts the impact of Alzheimer's into perspective:

Alzheimer's, the most common form of dementia, is a fatal brain disease in which people gradually lose their memories and their abilities to reason and care for themselves. It affects more than 26 million people globally and there is no cure.

A report last month said the worldwide costs of coping with dementia will reach $604 billion in 2010, more than one percent of global GDP output, and those costs will soar further as the number of sufferers triples by 2050.

Advocates want to see more money go into finding a cure for the disease as it claims more lives -- and families -- in the coming years due to an aging population. Said one U.S. Congresswoman: "For every dollar that the federal government spends today on the costs of Alzheimer's care, it invests less than a penny in research to find a cure. That simply does not make sense."

Article: New Alzheimer's guidelines aim for early diagnosis