Now, a new article, published on the website www.nhs.uk speaks of an American study that stated that brain scans may be able to detect Alzheimer’s Disease in a patient years before symptoms appear.
Researchers were from the Massachusetts Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center in the US. The study was funded by the US National Institutes of Health, the Alzheimer’s Association, the Mental Illness and Neuroscience Discovery Institute and the Illinois Department of Public Health.
The study results are not necessarily the reason for my writing this article. What I more concerned about is the early diagnosis of the disease “years before symptoms appear’.
Is this really a good thing or will it cause problems similar to those problems experienced by persons diagnosed with AIDs, cancers or even pregnancies (how many of us hid our pregnancies from our employers for as long as possible so that we would not be “let go” for some unrelated reason?)
Will persons with a diagnosis but no symptoms suddenly be looked up differently by employers, friends or even family members? Will their work be judged differently by an employer who may be LOOKING for symptomatology to align with the diagnosis?
Will insurance companies raise premiums? Will long term care insurance become impossible to obtain once there is a diagnosis? (Wouldn’t it be better to obtain LTC insurance when there is a mere suspicion rather than a diagnosis?
Will friends and family members become distant or isolate the person who is diagnosed because they feel that the person “has Alzheimer’s and probably won’t be up for” this or that?
What about the actual person who is being diagnosed? How much worry will it cause? Will they suddenly rearrange their life and start checking off their bucket list or will they be thrown into a deep dispair lying in wait of the day when the first symptoms actually appear?
And what if the diagnosis is WRONG?
Alzheimer’s and other dementias carry such a stigma. If you were the person who had the disease (or if it was to happen to your loved-one), would you want to know earlier or later?
I’d love to hear your thoughts.
LEARN TO LOVE YOUR LIFE AGAIN
Do you feel like you need to hit the REFRESH button on your life? Download our free guide and begin to create your best life yet!