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New Alzheimer's research yields guarded optimism

Credit: Quinn Dombrowski/Flickr
Credit: Quinn Dombrowski/Flickr

110,000 Marylanders have been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. More than twice that many care for them. And both numbers are growing. In June, the FDA approved the first new drug in 17 years to treat Alzheimer’s. University of Maryland neurologist Dr. Paul Fishman says sophisticated new scans can detect in the brains of more people the abnormal proteins that mark Alzheimer's.

Fishman and other experts will speak this week at a conferenceorganized for Maryland by the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America.

Also speaking on Thursday will be Morris Klein, an elder-law and special-needs attorney. He’ll discuss legal issues faced by many people with Alzheimer’s, including eligibility for Medicaid, special-needs planning, guardianships and drafting essential documents like powers of attorney and healthcare advance directives.

Also on Thursday, Margueritte Mertz, a certified senior advisor, will offer tips on how someone facing Alzheimer’s disease can put a healthcare team together - including strategies for caregivers to expand their skills.

Sheilah Kast is the host of On The Record, Monday-Friday, 9:30-10:00 am.
Maureen Harvie is Senior Supervising Producer for On the Record. She is a graduate of the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, and joined WYPR in 2014 as an intern for the newsroom. Whether coordinating live election night coverage, capturing the sounds of a roller derby scrimmage, interviewing veterans, or booking local authors, she is always on the lookout for the next story.