Therapy Offers Independence to Alzheimer's Patients - Study

Manila Bulletin, May 18, 2003 | Go to article overview

Therapy Offers Independence to Alzheimer's Patients - Study


People with Alzheimers disease can continue to do specific daily activities without the help of other family members or their caregivers. A new scientific study has confirmed this data.

zThe data, which was presented in Honolulu at the 55th annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology, was focused specifically on activities of daily living. It showed that the therapy significantly reduced patients loss of independent and that the preserved activities were the ability to tell time, walk around without getting lost, use household appliances, dress appropriately, take normal precautions and display good eating behavior.

Alzheimers disease is a progressive, degenerative disease that alters the brain, causing impaired memory, thinking and behavior. In many patients, cost for care giving services has skyrocketed due to the fact that they would require round-the-clock monitoring. The data provides to a better outlook for both patients and their families.

The good news on the new therapy was taken from an analysis of 1,500 patients who were prescribed therapy with rivastigmine (Exelon). The patients involved were suffering from moderate to moderately severe Alzheimers disease (AD). The study confirms that with the right therapy, patients with moderate to severe AD can still enjoy greater independence. The analysis was contained in An evaluation of the effects of rivastigmine on daily function in Alzheimers disease at different levels of cognitive impairment, Feldman H. Spiegel R, Quarg P.

The analysis was based on data pooled from three multi-center, randomized clinical trials in which 1,485 patients were given either Exelon or a placebo for 26 weeks. Participants were classified into mild, moderate or moderately severe AD. The patients abilities to perform activities were evaluated by means of the Progressive Deterioration Scale (PDS), a 29-item scale commonly used by caregivers to evaluate a patients ability to perform common daily tasks. …

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