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Research for Detecting Alzheimer's Promising

3/20/2014 Dr. Zorba Paster Wisconsin Public Radio -- Recent research published in the journal Nature Medicine shows promise for an Alzheimer’s blood test.

Recent research published in the journal Nature Medicine shows promise for an Alzheimer’s blood test.

Recent research published in the journal Nature Medicine shows promise for an Alzheimer’s blood test. Investigators took 500 people 70 and older and followed them for five years. Some were normal, while others were showing evidence of cognitive decline.

My mom died of Alzheimer’s back in 1981.

It started insidiously. My wife, Penny, and I were going on a vacation to Asia, gone for a year. We gave mom a book that listed where she could write to us. In those days, you could pick up your mail at any American Express office as long as you had travelers checks.

She couldn’t follow our directions. I assumed it was because she was a nervous Nellie, but that wasn’t it. She worked in a Chicago department store, and when we left she could still man the register. But when we came back one year later, she couldn’t make change.

Seven years later, she was dead. The last years of her life, she did not know who our kids were and, frankly, hardly recognized even me. It was really an awful experience.

So any time there’s a step forward in our efforts to conquer Alzheimer’s, I’m for it.

Dr. Zorba Paster Wisconsin Public Radio