According to the latest statistics, as many as 5.5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s disease, and its prevalence is only expected to rise in the next few decades. At the same time, however, research into treatments for the condition is accelerating. With every passing year, we move a little further down the road toward the goal of a universal treatment for this nearly universal ailment.
What treatments currently exist for Alzheimer’s?
Today, individuals who have Alzheimer’s have access to five medications that have been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. These treatments are donepezil, galantamine, memantine, rivastigmine, and a combination of donepezil and memantine. These treatments work by blocking the process by which Alzheimer’s destroys the neurons in a person’s brain.
What is the goal of the treatments being developed?
The treatments that are available now can provide relief for Alzheimer’s symptoms, but they do not treat the condition itself. The focus of much of the current research into Alzheimer’s is the actual disease, and the hope is that eventually we will be able to slow down its progress in individuals.
What are the most promising areas of research for future treatments?
As we have learned to better understand the brain, we have moved closer to a better understanding of how Alzheimer’s damages it. This has helped researchers identify some treatments that can work against its effects. Some of the treatments being studied are Aducanumab, which can slow the growth of plaques in the brain; AADvac1, which can spark an immune system reaction against the proteins that harm neurons; and Sargramostim, a medication currently used for treating leukemia, but which may have promise as a treatment for Alzheimer’s.
Avalon Memory Care provides compassionate and supportive care for individuals with Alzheimer’s. Families are always welcome to visit their loved ones at our locations throughout Dallas, Houston, and Arlington. To learn for yourself what makes our services stand out, call us today at (214) 752-7050.