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Treating Alzheimer's

March 4, 2011 • Volume 21, Issue 9
Is the nation prepared for millions of new cases?
By Beth Baker

Introduction

The award-winning buddy program (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green)
The award-winning buddy program at Northwestern University pairs medical students with people who have early-stage Alzheimer's disease, allowing them to get to know each other on a personal rather than clinical level. Above, Jenny Knauss, left, and Sarah Cole. (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green)

As the nation's baby boomers grow older, Alzheimer's disease, an incurable age-related brain disorder, is becoming an urgent concern. About one in eight boomers — 10 million people — are expected to get Alzheimer's disease unless a dramatic scientific breakthrough occurs soon. As researchers race to find a way to prevent or treat Alzheimer's, health professionals are coming up with groundbreaking ways to improve the lives of people with dementia as well as their caregivers. Meanwhile, the federal government is implementing the first-ever National Alzheimer's Project Act, aimed at developing a coordinated national strategy for tackling the disease. But during a time of fiscal austerity, will the nation be willing — or able — to invest the billions of dollars needed to adequately fund costly scientific research and high-quality care for people with Alzheimer's?

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Alzheimer's Disease
Mar. 04, 2011  Treating Alzheimer's
Apr. 04, 2008  Preventing Memory Loss
May 15, 1998  Alzheimer's Disease
Jul. 24, 1992  Alzheimer's Disease
Nov. 11, 1983  Alzheimer's: Mystery Disease of the Elderly
BROWSE RELATED TOPICS:
Genetic Disorders and Medical Genetics
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