“There is a tsunami of Alzheimer cases coming, and for those of us who are older, we have to wonder whether we are part of it,” exclaimed Dallas Anderson, 64, an epidemiologist at the National Institute of Aging.
In fact, Anderson, along with other experts at Rush University in Chicago,
predicts that the number of people with the disease will nearly triple by 2050 to around 14 million Americans unless a cure is found within the next few years.
“Our study draws attention to an urgent need for more research and treatments as well as preventative strategies to reduce this epidemic, which will put a huge burden on society, disabling more people who develop Alzheimer’s, as well as caretakers, and challenge medical facilities and social safety nets,” added co-author Jennifer Wueve.
It has also been pointed out that it now costs between $75,000-$80,000 a year for families to take care of affected relatives at home, and even more (between $13,000-$15,000 a month) if they need to be institutionalized.
Alzheimer's is a degenerative brain disease that robs individuals of their sense of self, time, place and all surroundings leaving behind only a "shell" of the person.
However, despite these dire warnings, George Vrandenburg, chairman of the national advisory organization, USAgainst Alzheimer’s sees a bright light at the end of the tunnel with the current development of new drugs, which have shown positive results in modifying early-stage disease.
Readers interested in reading the Rush report can find it online in yesterday’s journal Neurology.
To learn more about Alzheimer’s treatments available, contact the Connecticut Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association, 2075 Silas Deane Pkwy., Suite 100, Rocky Hill, CT 06067 860 828-2828,