Alzheimer’s Association hopeful, thanks to approval of new drug

Updated: Jun. 8, 2021 at 3:59 PM CDT
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - The Federal Drug Administration (FDA) approved a drug Monday that treats Alzheimer’s.

It is the newest treatment for the disease in 20 years.

“This is a really amazing time in the world of research and an amazing time for those living with Alzheimer’s disease and their caregivers,” said Jessica Miller, a chapter executive for the Alzheimer’s Association.

Miller felt hopeful after the approval of the drug, aducanumab.

“In the past, all we’ve been able to tell people is what’s good for the heart is good for the brain,” she said.

Aducanumab helps slow down the progression of Alzheimer’s disease, a huge shift from only being able to recommend lifestyle changes to patients, such as being active and eating well.

“Those were the things we had in the past to not even necessarily be able to treat Alzheimer’s disease, but help potentially prevent it or create more longevity,” said Miller.

According to a report from Tennessee’s Alzheimer’s and Related Dementia Advisory Council, there are 120,000 Tennesseans living with ADRD. Each year, more than 3,500 Tennesseans die from Alzheimer’s disease.

Miller added, “History shows us that the first drug is the first step in finding the cure.”

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