Episode summary introduction: It’s been said that Alzheimer’s is harder on the family then it is on the patient. As a nurse, I feel that’s a pretty fair assessment but not the whole picture. In the beginning, it’s very difficult on the patient and as the disease progresses I feel as though it’s harder on the patient’s loved ones and caregivers.
Topic 1:Alzheimer’s A progressive disease beginning with mild memory loss possibly leading to loss of the ability to carry on a conversation and respond to the environment.
Topic 2: Statistics: Alzheimer’s is the 6th leading cause of death in the U.S. An estimated 5.8 million Americans age 65 and older are living with Alzheimer's dementia in 2020. 80% are age 75 or older. Almost two-thirds of Americans with Alzheimer's are women. Alzheimer’s has a range of stages from mild, moderate to severe. Treatment is based on these stages and some stages may overlap.
Topic 3:There has not been a lot of changes in treatment options. Many clinical trials fail when trying to move to phase III. The belief of the failures is from therapies being implemented too late in the disease process. The thought is that we need to start treating possible Alzheimer's when there is only mild cognitive impairment- not just Alzheimer's, since there is a link between MCI and AD.
Outro: By 2050, 14 million people will be diagnosed with Alzheimer's. With no known cause or cure, we as healthcare providers need to be able to provide education, empathy and compassion for patients and families. Educating ourselves on alternative ways to manage Alzheimer patients.
Additional Resources Mentioned:
Call to action:
Alzheimer’s Association: Local Chapter
Family support groups and Annual walk: 10/17/2020 information can be found at the following link:https://www.alz.org/cwva?set=1
Mini mental test