At least 350,000 Texans live with Alzheimer's disease, and the numbers are rising. Nationwide, an estimated 16 million people will have the disease by 2050.
Alzheimer's is a degenerative brain condition that affects behavior, memory and other cognitive functions. This progressive form of dementia is most common in older adults and develops in stages over time.
The causes of Alzheimer's are not yet understood in full, but personal and medical costs are real for the 5 million Americans currently living with the disease.
Caretakers play an invaluable role as well. In Texas last year, 1.4 million caregivers worked hours unpaid and the cost of caring for patients with Alzheimer’s and other types of dementia was an estimated $236 billion nationwide in 2016.
Cutting-edge research conducted in San Antonio is focusing on gene-editing and stem cell therapy. Can these and other medical developments provide new hope for patients and their families?
- George Perry, dean of the College of Sciences at the University of Texas at San Antonio
- Meg Barron, executive director of the Alzheimer’s Association's San Antonio & South Texas chapter
- Dianne Teran, LMSW, caregiver support specialist with the Alamo Area Council of Governments' Bexar Area Agency on Aging
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