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  • 04.19.11

    New Guidelines For Spotting Alzheimer’s

    Wall Street Journal | Shirley S. Wang

    The first update in nearly 30 years to U.S. guidelines for the diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease expands the definition to include patients with earlier stage symptoms and recognizes the condition as being on a continuum rather than just end-stage dementia. People diagnosed with Alzheimer’s tend to be 65 and older, but evidence suggests that signs of the memory-robbing disease, like amyloid protein plaques and nerve cell death, may start in the brain five to 10 years before they can currently be detected. In the future, doctors hope to rely more on biomarkers, proteins and other molecules in patients’ blood and tissue that are indicators of the disease.

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