Living with a loved one suffering from cognitive decline is difficult; in particular, there is tremendous difficulty in choosing the course of treatment to pursue. You want to do what is right, but with as little added stress as possible; as a matter of face, just receiving a diagnosis is much harder than it needs to be.
2015 appears to be the year of smart diagnostics in the medical industry with tools aimed at accomplishing earlier diagnoses, along with increased data collection, giving us an improved picture of tough to treat diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. One such tool for helping clinicians diagnose Alzheimer’s is the Brain PET scan.
Positron emission tomography (PET); simply put, allows clinicians to develop an image of the living brain; notably, blood flow, oxygen, and glucose metabolism in the tissues within the active brain. Doctors use these images to diagnose several brain diseases, such as tumors, and strokes, while helping to determine if a patient is experiencing normal cognitive decline, clinical dementia, or Alzheimer’s.
Studies Show A Brain PET Helps For Early Alzheimer’s Diagnosis
As a family member with a loved one suffering, it isn’t possible to know the difference between dementia and Alzheimer’s; in fact, doctors often miss this.
“Furthermore, these new findings demonstrate that amyloid PET scans, by ruling out Alzheimer’s disease diagnosis in patients who would otherwise have received it, can alter patients’ management, and improve outcomes.”
-Dr. Marwan Sabbagh, speaking with MedPage Today about amyloid PET scans.
Treating Alzheimer’s is still a difficult task, but knowing what you’re up against, and knowing early, can help you decide on lifestyle changes that have shown to alleviate symptoms while improving quality of life; for example, a ketogenic diet, increased social activity, and exercise. With the increased data collection, we are now experiencing, we are rapidly learning about possible treatments, giving all of us some hope for the near future.
If you have a loved one suffering, the earlier the diagnosis the better, talk to your doctor, and contact the Glendale MRI Institute for questions. Also, follow us on Twitter @GlendaleMRI where we share all the latest news.