Now the sixth-leading cause of death in the United States (fifth in North Carolina) and the most expensive disease (it costs roughly $341,000 for the health needs of someone from diagnosis to death), what do we know?
First described by Dr. Alois Alzheimer in 1906 and anticipated to reach epidemic proportions globally by 2050, where do we stand 110 years later in terms of knowledge, treatment and prevention? And why, when we’ve made so much progress in other arenas, like cancer and heart disease, have we gained so little ground in this one?
Dr. Carol Colton, a leader of cutting edge research in the Neurology Department of Duke University Medical Center, helps answer these questions. (Below is a condensed version of our conversation.)