Alzheimer’s disease may be the saddest of all situations for family members to experience. Watching as a loved one slowly loses his or her ability to function independently, as cognitive ability fades is painful, while it ignites memories of when he or she was a strong, functioning member of the family. Research continues, and a new hope has emerged for Alzheimer’s patients.
A study completed at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center reveals a new treatment which may improve the memory of those afflicted with a mild cognitive impairment, or mild to moderate Alzheimer’s. A form of insulin delivered through nasal spray has produced significant results in clinical studies. Improvement in short term memory was clearly evident. The next step is to determine if there are harmful side effects to the treatment.
Current prescription drugs used to treat Alzheimer’s can cost over $400 each month. Their effectiveness is based on the individual, and complications when combined with other medications. Medications used by patients today have multiple side effects including liver damage, and their success rate is questionable. There is no estimate of cost regarding the new nasal-spray induced insulin.
Drugs administered today simply mask the effects of the disease. Researchers are desperately seeking a cure; a compound which will treat the underlying cause, and stop or improve cognitive ability.
By James Turnage
Photo courtesy of Ed Yourdon