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Dementia cure could be found in 5 years, world expert claims
A cure for dementia could be just five years away, the outgoing chairman of the World Dementia Council has announced.
Dr. Dennis Gillings stated that two potential breakthroughs had surpassed his expectations, and that he was “optimistic” that treatments could be developed as soon as 2020.
These scientific “great strides” are targeted at removing the plaques that form on the brain of dementia patients, as well as un-tangling the neural knots associated with the disease.
He said: “The original goal [of the council] was disease modification by 2025… I feel a lot more optimistic now: I wouldn't be surprised if we get there by 2020 or 2021.”
A major factor in the developments has been a shift in scientific approach, with physicians now looking to customise diagnoses to address separate sub-types of the disease, rather than trying to treat it as a standalone condition.
Current treatments for conditions such as Alzheimer’s Disease can only mask existing symptoms, whereas the new methods could halt or reverse the progress of dementia when augmented with brain exercises.
While Dr. Gillings praised the £150m investment made by the government in the Dementia Research Institute, he cited the higher rate of funding that is granted in the US and raised concerns about whether initial treatments would receive adequate resources in the UK.
A court case was lodged against the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence a decade ago for limiting funds for dementia drugs. However, leading UK health figures including Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt and chief executive of Alzheimer’s Society Jeremy Hughes have been quick to call for the momentum to be maintained.
Fiona Lowry, our CEO, stated: “At Good Care Group, we welcome every medical advance that could improve the lives of people receiving care. We also work closely with national health bodies, providing them with invaluable reports that show how services can be adapted to enhance the health and wellbeing of dementia patients. Until advances are made that can further alleviate the symptoms of dementia, we will continue to provide bespoke dementia care solutions that focus on the wellbeing of each and every client.”