Dementia in the News

Esther Tuttle is nearing the end of the 10th decade of a remarkably productive and adventurous life. If all continues to go as well as it has to date, next July 1 she will join the rapidly growing clan of centenarians, whose numbers in the United States have increased to 96,548 in 2009 from 38,300 in 1990, according to the Census Bureau.

One of the nation's highest-profile women is taking on one of the nation's highest-profile health problems that have affected her father and more than five million other Americans.

One morning last spring, about 200 senior citizens descended on the Coolidge Corner Theatre for a special program of classic old movies.

It was the first in a four-part series - the second one is today - called "Meet Me at the Coolidge...and make memories," designed to remind the audience of the good old days of cinema. Attendees got big welcomes and free popcorn and soda. They watched clips from "Oklahoma", "Casablanca," and "The Wizard of Oz", and saw legendary stars like Judy Garland, Katherine Hepburn, and Humphrey Bogart.

Right now, more than five million Americans have Alzheimer's disease, a number that is only expected to increase in the years ahead. I know the pain that Alzheimer's disease can cause - for those diagnosed with it, and for their families and caregivers - which is why my Administration is committed to finding a cure.

Under the microscope, the tan image with brown splotches resembles a burned map, its edges singed and riddled with dark squiggles that shouldn't be there. This is a piece of brain from a 45-year-old man:  Former National Football League linebacker John Grimsley, who suited up for the Houston Oilers for nine years and absorbed at least 11 concussions during professional and college play.

Bringing together two esteemed institutions known for groundbreaking Alzheimer's research, Cure Alzheimer's Fund has awarded the University of Pittsburgh a $300,00 grant and Massachusetts General Hospital/Harvard (MGH) a $100,000 grant to fund an innovative joint research project on Alzheimer's disease, which currently affects 5.3 billion Americans and their families.

Back in the 1980s, it was becoming evident that Alzheimer's disease was an imposing challenge whose weight on health and society was just beginning to be felt. As people began to live longer and the U.S. population began to age, more and more people were finding themselves on the receiving end of a diagnosis of this slow but deadly neurodegenerative disease.

Not only do women live longer than men, on average, but a new study from the Mayo Clinic suggests they also may keep their cognitive function longer, too.

In a study of more than 2,000 adults 70 to 89 years old, researchers found that men were 1.5 times more likely to experience mild cognitive decline than their female counterparts.

The vaulted protection that intellectually active adults get from Alzheimer's disease has a dark downside, a study released Wednesday has found. Once dementia symptoms become evident and Alzheimer's disease is diagnosed in such patients, their mental decline can come with frightening speed.

Syndicate content