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Alzheimer Diagnosis Possible With Scan
Posted: Monday, April 9, 2012 8:16 PM
Joined: 12/6/2011
Posts: 3326

From Alzheimer's Daily News:

(Source: Wall Street Journal) - A much-anticipated test developed by Eli Lilly that detects the presence of proteins in the brain that are related to Alzheimer's disease was approved Friday by the Food and Drug Administration.

The tool could enable clinicians to detect Alzheimer's earlier and more accurately in patients at the earliest sign of memory problems - a potential boon to treatment and developing drugs against the disease.

The test uses a chemical called florbetapir, known by the brand name Amyvid, which is a radioactive agent that tags clumps of a sticky substance called amyloid, hallmarks of Alzheimer's disease. The chemical, which costs $1,600 per dose, then is detected using a brain imaging technique called positron emission tomography (PET scans).

For patients who already have symptoms of cognitive decline, a positive scan suggests that moderate to frequent amyloid plaques are present in the brain, which is consistent with Alzheimer's disease. The imaging agent can't be used to diagnose someone with Alzheimer's disease if the individual doesn't experience memory impairment because the presence of amyloid in the brain doesn't alone suggest that someone has Alzheimer's.

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Posted: Wednesday, April 11, 2012 9:06 PM
Joined: 1/3/2012
Posts: 189

This is good news. This is the first time a early detection test was approved by the FDA. True - The next step, is training doctors how to read the scan images. I feal this will this will lead to earlier detection of Alzheimer's, and with it the ability to start Alzheimer's medicines earlier; so symptoms are also prolonged and life is longer.
Posted: Sunday, April 15, 2012 3:54 PM
Joined: 1/3/2012
Posts: 189

Hay, I checked. This is the trial I did in 2010, at Stanford.  can't get the results since when I had th Pet Scan It was still a trial. Seamed safe to me. I'm on Medicare, and Medicare is slow to aprove new meds and tests.  New Pet Scan not Medicare aproved yet.
His little rose
Posted: Wednesday, April 18, 2012 10:26 AM
Joined: 4/16/2012
Posts: 33

That is going to be my worry, my Dad is MCR with a supplemental insurance.  The cost is going to be a huge factor.  Most AD patients are on MCR and I don't foresee MCR ever covering this expensive a test.


But for those with means, this is excellent news.


Let's hope this is an effective tool, so that some day, this can be used for early detection.

Posted: Friday, April 20, 2012 1:55 PM
Joined: 4/18/2012
Posts: 21

Please see my post on the "Younger Onset AD Heading" titled, "Best Test For Early Detection of AD".  This test picks up the earliest sign of Alzheimer's--reduction in glucose utilization.

The Eli Lilly test picks up plaques.  To this day, we do not know for sure that plaques cause AD.  Autopsies have been done on people who are were very mentally alert and very old who had a lot of plaques in their brains.  IMHO the Eli Lilly test is more expensive and less probitive.