Letter: Alzheimer’s not just an old person’s disease - East Valley Tribune: Letters To The Editor

Letter: Alzheimer’s not just an old person’s disease

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Posted: Wednesday, November 7, 2012 10:00 am

Many people think of Alzheimer’s as an “old person’s disease” and an inevitable part of aging. As my family knows too well, this couldn’t be further from the truth.

Three years ago, my husband was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s at the age of 55. Soon after, he entered a clinical trial at the Banner Alzheimer’s Institute in Phoenix that recently ended due to its lack of efficacy.

Since then, I’ve gone from being the wife of a loving husband to a fulltime caregiver, watching in horror as this disease pulls my husband, and part of me, into the shadows forever.

Alzheimer’s disease is the sixth-leading cause of death in the U.S. and the only deadly disease with no modifying treatment or cure.

Still, Alzheimer’s research in the U.S. receives a paltry $450 million, or about $90 per person living with the disease. This is a travesty, and with November being National Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month, now is the perfect time to do something about it.

If left unchecked, millions of other families will experience the ravages of this disease, and the U.S. will spend $2 trillion over the next decade for care. We must call out political leaders to act now before it’s too late. Together we can be the generation to stop Alzheimer’s.

Dawn Revere


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