FOX 47 - Health News
It is a debilitating disease, affecting 160,000 families in Wisconsin. Alzheimer's patients suffer memory loss, poor judgment, and language problems -- making treatment difficult
"The person with the disease has trouble communicating, so we don't know what to do to help them," said Paul Rusk, executive director of the Wisconsin Alzheimer's Association.
And the number of cases is spiking -- 115 million people worldwide by the year 2050.
"Over the age of 85, 40 percent of people at that age have Alzheimer's disease," said Dr. Sanjay Asthana. "Another 20 percent have some kind of memory problem."
Dr. Asthana is director of the new Alzheimer's Disease research center. He says the illness creates social and economic burdens for families.
"The disease is so devastating. It's projected that millions of people will have the disease in this country, and bankrupt the Medicare system, unless we find an effective treatment."
Doctors have lofty goals -- to recognize and treat the disease before symptoms start. Using brain scans, blood tests, and psychological exams, doctors hope to discover the secrets of alzheimer's -- most importantly, how it happens and who's going to get it.
One of the most unique features of the UW center is a statewide registry of at-risk Alzheimer's patients. Doctors say these 1,300 people -- some as young as 20 -- could be a key to treatments down the road.
"We know these people are at genetic risk for the disease," Dr. Asthana said. "So, we'll follow them over 20, 30 years to see who develops the disease and why they're different from those who don't."
Proactive steps, researches hope, will uncover the mystery of Alzheimer's.
Said Rusk, "Participating in research is an incredibly powerful way to fight back."
UWSM received a $7 million grant from the National Institutes of Health and Aging for the project. It is one of only 17 centers in the entire country to take on this kind of work.
People at UWSM hope to open another Alzheimer's center in Milwaukee, targeted at helping minority patients.
Sun. - Fri. on FOX 47 News at 9!
Top Health Headlines (foxnews.com)
|11 gluten-free brands worth buying|
With more and more gluten-free options becoming available, it can be hard to know what products you’ll love and what products will leave you wanting more.
|14 non-dairy foods that are high in calcium|
Calcium builds healthy bones and teeth and ensures your muscles, cells, and nerves work properly.
|Sierra Leone capital at standstill as Ebola lockdown begins|
Sierra Leone began a three-day lockdown on Friday in an effort to halt the spread of the Ebola virus, as President Ernest Bai Koroma urged residents to comply with the emergency measures.
|Brutal murders of 8 Ebola aid workers has chilling effect on humanitarian efforts|
As details emerge about the brutal murders of at least eight Ebola aid workers and journalists whose bodies were found dumped in a latrine in a Guinean village, questions linger about whether the murders will have a chilling effect on the international relief effort.
|Angelina Jolie surgery sparks surge in female cancer tests, study says|
Hollywood star Angelina Jolie's decision to make public her double mastectomy more than doubled the number of women in Britain seeking to have genetic breast cancer tests, according to a study released on Friday.
Tonight on FOX 47
11:30am MLB on FOX Pre-Game
12:00pm MLB on FOX: "Dodgers vs. Cubs"
3:00pm Ring of Honor Wrestling
4:00pm Big Bang Theory
4:30pm Big Bang Theory
5:00pm Paid Program
5:30pm FOX College Football Extra
6:30pm FOX College Football: "Oklahoma vs. West Virginia"
** Times Approximate after Football **
10:00pm FOX 47 News at 9
10:30pm Animation Domination
11:30pm Ring of Honor Wrestling
12:30am Modern Family