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Blogs of Writer, Artist, Photographer, & Caregiver Joanne D. Kiggins

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Joanne has published more than 2,500 articles and was award recipient of the 1990 Woman of the Year for Beaver County, Pennsylvania, for her accomplishments and excellence in journalism and to the community. Her co-authored book, “Unforgettable Journey,” won fifth place in the Grand Beginnings romance contest. An excerpt from her WIP, “Unearthed,” placed her fifth in the Absolute Write Idol contest. Most recently, her essay, “Perseverance,” is published in the Stories of Strength anthology in which 100% of the profits are donated to disaster relief charities. Her most recent articles were published in ByLine Magazine, Writer's Digest, AbsoluteWrite.com, and Moondance.org. She has a monthly freelance writing column at Absolutewrite.com. Currently, she is the sole caregiver for her 85-year-old mother.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Progress Yes, But A Cure Would Be Better

I read this article “Progress Cited in Alzheimer’s Diagnosis” in The New York Times on October 14. Seems researchers are working on a blood test to detect Alzheimer’s disease. Though it’s too late for the millions of our elderly who are already in the severe to end stage of the disease, it would be wonderful if this blood test becomes something doctors will be able to use soon. Even with a 90% accuracy rating in its testing phase, it seems the blood test won’t be available to doctors for another “few” years.

There has been some talk about this test; some say they wouldn’t bother getting the test because they wouldn’t want to know if they would be tested positive for Alzheimer’s. Why? Because the medications used in Alzheimer’s treatment today, only slow down the process, if they work at all. For some, the medications aggravate the disease.

I’m not sure I would have the blood test when it would become available. The likelihood of me getting Alzheimer’s is high because both my parents had/have it.

Yes, this may be progress in learning about Alzheimer’s disease, but I’d rather see the scientist working on a cure for this horrible disease. Right now there is no cure, and the outcome, whether “predicted” or not would still be the same.

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Blogger nancy said...

i too hear about the blood test and don't know if i would take it right now. what would change knowing i'd likely develop it. i agree the drugs seem to slow the progression at best so until they can find a halt or cure....i may take my chances.

10/16/2007 8:09 PM  
Blogger ~Betsy said...

I also agree with Nancy. Lots of things are a crap shoot for me because I was adopted at birth. I don't have much knowledge of my genetics so I just don't concern myself with it. I don't really want to know if I'm headed toward AD.

10/18/2007 9:34 AM