Amyloids are a type of protein that is normally beneficial for the brain. However, these proteins can occasionally become misshapen, and they begin to accumulate in organs and tissues throughout the body. This condition is called amyloidosis and it can lead to many health problems. If the amyloids clump together in organs, they can cause organ failure, but when amyloids accumulate in the brain, they can result in chronic brain degeneration conditions, such as Alzheimer’s disease or dementia. Ordinarily, this condition is detected through invasive procedures. The following information will help Alzheimer’s caregivers in Windermere understand a new and gentle method for detecting amyloidosis.
Current Methods of Detection
These abnormal amyloid deposits are often not noticed until a person goes to the doctor because of cognitive decline, and by this point, irreversible damage has already occurred. Enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) is a test that is currently used to discover the presences of abnormal amyloids before they cause problems, but this test is not very useful. It is expensive, exposes patients to dangerous radiation, and it only provides information about the concentration of amyloids. Since the ELISA test does not specifically identify malformed amyloids, it does not provide a very accurate diagnosis.
Finding New Methods
German researchers from the Gottingen University have discovered a new way of testing for amyloidosis and more specifically, Alzheimer’s disease. This method uses an infrared sensor that has been coated in antibodies for misshapen amyloids. The sensor can extract these biomarkers for amyloidosis from either blood or cerebrospinal fluid, and it is very accurate. Since this test just requires a small collection of blood, it is far less invasive and risky than the ELISA test.
The researchers are currently applying for a patent for this test so it can be used in hospitals and health care offices worldwide. It could help doctors diagnose patients at an early stage of amyloidosis, and therefore give Windermere dementia caregivers more time to prepare their loved ones for treatment. An early diagnosis would also mean that seniors could receive treatment before amyloid accumulation begins to harm cells throughout the body, which means the progression of the disease could be delayed or halted.
This is a giant step in terms of Alzheimer’s and dementia research. While an Alzheimer’s diagnosis may be challenging, it’s important for Windermere senior care providers to know that there is help out there. Home Care Assistance of Windermere provides comprehensive Alzheimer’s and dementia home care to help local seniors come to terms and live with the varying nature of the disease. In addition to safety monitoring, mobility assistance, and help with personal care, we supplement Alzheimer’s care with our patented Cognitive Therapeutics Method to sharpen mental acuity and delay dementia symptoms. Learn more about our services when you call (407) 232-7155 and schedule a free in-home consultation.