Saturday, February 5, 2011

How baby boomers are affected by Alzheimer's disease (part 3)

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Alzheimer's Association

• An individual will live with the increasingly
devastating, debilitating and destructive
effects of Alzheimer’s for many years.
• Most people survive an average of four to
six years after a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s —
but many live for as long as 20 years with
the disease.
• On average, 40 percent of a person’s years
with Alzheimer’s are spent in the most severe
stage of the disease — longer than any
other stage.
• By age 80, 4 percent of Americans enter a
nursing home. For people with Alzheimer’s,
75 percent end up in a nursing home by
age 80.

The Truth about Alzheimer’s that Every American Should Know

Alzheimer’s Kills
Right now, we are losing the battle against
Alzheimer’s disease. Death rates for other major
diseases — HIV, stroke, heart disease, prostate
cancer, breast cancer — are declining. Our
country’s significant commitment to combat
these conditions has saved lives.

But for Alzheimer’s disease, the federal
government’s efforts have been meager, and
deaths are skyrocketing. The consequence is
that over 80,000 Americans die each year of
Alzheimer’s — but only after a very long good-bye,
only after years of suffering endured by individuals,
family and friends. Today, there are no Alzheimer
survivors — none.

Alzheimer’s is not just
a little memory loss.
It eventually kills,
but not before it takes
everything away.
“Dawn is coming. The sun will rise
and peak. I now know my mother
never will rise again. But still, every
morning when the sun comes, I think
maybe this will be the day she will
know me. This will be the day I can
tell her one last time that I love her,
and she’ll hear me. But in my heart,
I know it’s over.”
— Rob George, Texas

America means progress, solutions, results. But,
Alzheimer’s disease — the sixth-leading cause of
death in America — remains the only one of the
top 10 causes of death without an identified way to
prevent it, cure it or slow its progression.
As the baby boomers begin reaching age 65,
this means more deaths from Alzheimer’s, more
heartbreak. As the Baby Boom Generation ages,
the situation is only going to deteriorate — as
horribly as the disease itself — unless and until we
demand a cure.

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