Since the discovery of Alzheimer’s disease, researchers have been searching for a cure. While we have learned ways to help lower a person’s risk or manage symptoms, we have not been successful in stopping a disease that affects more than 6 million Americans. Fortunately, there is now a new treatment that shows promise in bringing us one step closer to ending Alzheimer’s.
While this new therapy is not a cure itself, it is a step in the right direction. Community Senior Life offers memory care services throughout Alabama, and we have seen the impact Alzheimer’s disease has on a person and their family. We are sharing how this groundbreaking new treatment is changing the way we treat Alzheimer’s and what it could mean for future generations.
FDA-Approved Alzheimer’s Disease Treatment
What is Aducanumab?
Aducanumab is the generic form of Aduhelm™ from Biogen and is a breakthrough in the fight to end Alzheimer’s as it’s the first therapy of its kind.
This newly approved Alzheimer’s disease treatment is groundbreaking for two reasons:
- It is the first FDA-approved Alzheimer’s disease treatment since 2003
- It is the first therapy in history to “address the underlying biology of Alzheimer’s disease (Alzheimer’s Association).”
Previous Alzheimer’s disease treatments only addressed the symptoms of the disease, lessening their impact on an individual’s daily life. Aducanumab goes after the cause of the condition by attacking and reducing the number of amyloid plaques that build up in the brain. Aducanumab aims to slow down the progression of the disease, giving individuals more time before the disease starts to impact their daily lives. This could mean maintaining independence, sustaining relationships with friends and family, and holding onto memories for longer.
Who Will Benefit from Aducanumab?
At this time, the FDA is not requiring any specific diagnostic testing, but (according to the label) aducanumab is meant for treating Alzheimer’s disease based on the presence of amyloid-beta plaques – which means a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease is required. An individual needs to have a physician confirm that they have amyloid plaques in their brain before they are prescribed this therapy.
Additionally, this therapy is the first to “demonstrate that removing amyloid from the brain may delay cognitive and functional decline in people living with early Alzheimer’s (Alzheimer’s Association).” Essentially, those living with the early stages of the disease will likely see the most benefits from this treatment, making it even more important to seek early detection and diagnosis.
While the Alzheimer’s Association also states that “there is no evidence that aducanumab can restore lost memories or cognitive function,” the sooner an individual receives the treatment, the more benefits they will likely get from it.
How and Where is Aducanumab Administered?
“Aducanumab is administered intravenously (IV) via a 45- to 60-minute infusion every four weeks (Alzheimer’s Association)” and can be administrated in hospitals, infusion therapy centers, or even at an individual’s home by a specialized nurse.
Aducanumab has only recently been approved by the FDA, so nationwide distribution and implementation will take some time. However, if you or a loved one is experiencing memory changes or has recently been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, speak to your physician about aducanumab as a potential treatment option.
Alzheimer’s & Dementia Care Care in Alabama
Our care team members deliver unsurpassed memory care and work closely with each resident to ensure their needs are met in a safe and welcoming environment. Our approach to daily life is what contributes to our low-stress, soothing atmosphere that provides comfort and a sense of home that helps residents maintain their independence while having access to around-the-clock care and support.
Our memory care features and amenities include:
- 24/7 nurse call systems
- Electronically secured buildings
- Daily meals and snacks
- Therapeutic activities
- Medication management
- Dressing assistance
- Personal appearance and hygiene assistance
- Mobility assistance
We have not won the war against Alzheimer’s disease yet, but we are one step closer with the approval of this new treatment! To learn more about our memory care communities in Alabama and how they could benefit someone you know, we encourage you to contact a member of the Community Senior Life team.