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Alzheimer's Disease - Can Surgery Help You Treat It?

Written and reviewed by
MBBS, MD - Radiology, DNB (Radiology), DM (Diagnostic & Interventional Neuroradiology), CCST (UK)
Neurosurgeon, Kolkata  •  24 years experience
Alzheimer's Disease - Can Surgery Help You Treat It?

In recent times, the advancement of medical science has substantially contributed in comprehending the Alzheimer’s disease. Unfortunately, the number of individuals suffering from the disease is expected to rise in the next ten years which pose a threat to the allocation of health care resources and public health. Alzheimer’s disease is thought to be a complex disease which influences a person’s behavior as well as cognition through numerous mechanisms.

Can surgery be deemed as a treatment for Alzheimer’s disease?
The surgery is a multicenter clinical trial which is making a new direction in clinical research. It is devised to halt or slow down the problems caused by the disease which gradually erases a lifetime of memories in elderly patients. Though there is no cure for Alzheimer’s disease, it has been found that low-voltage electric charges delivered right at the brain. Only the symptomatic therapies for Alzheimer’s disease are provided which do not have any effect on the evolution of the disease. The standard medical treatments for Alzheimer’s disease include cholinesterase inhibitors along with a partial N-methyl D-aspartate antagonist. In most cases of mild to moderate symptoms of this disease, a combination of treatments is used according to the clinical history, age and condition of the patient.

Mental activity supporting cognition
Many patients having normal cognition or mild impairment have a fear that they may develop AD. Many experts are of the opinion that mentally challenging activities including brain teasers and crossword puzzles can be helpful in reducing the risks in such patients. Clinical trials are under the way for determining whether or not these types of activities have any substantial effect on halting the progression of AD.

Treating AD in its moderate to the severe stage
Numerous studies have shown that blockade of NMDA receptors by memantine can be used safely in combination with ChEls. This combination has been shown to delay the institutionalization in patients with Alzheimer’s disease.

Treating secondary symptoms
A variety of behavioral as well as pharmacologic interventions can help in overcoming the clinical manifestations of the disease. These include anxiety, psychotic behavior, depression and agitation among others. The effectiveness of this disease can range from modest to excellent. No particular agent or dose of it can be unanimously accepted to be the sole treatment option for the wide range of clinical issues. Moreover, in the recent time, the FDA has not accepted any psychotropic agent for treating AD.

Along with these treatment options, there are behavioral interventions that can range from patient-centred approaches to caregiver training for helping manage the cognitive and behavioral manifestations of Alzheimer’s disease. Last but not the least, it is very crucial to point out the significance of treatment in the early stages of AD in order to cure it better. In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

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