Alzheimer’s Disease is a terribly debilitating illness that is difficult for the person and especially difficult for the family. As the disease progresses, the person cannot recognize family members and the ability to perform daily tasks is severely hampered. Alzheimer’s is the most common form of dementia, but it is not a normal part of aging. It can also lead to nursing home abuse, which is a concern for many families.
Many families make the painful decision to admit a family member into a nursing home when the disease becomes severe enough to make it impossible for the family to provide care. Even though there are no cures at this time for Alzheimer’s, there are some treatments that can mitigate some of the symptoms of Alzheimer’s Disease.
A New Drug May Help Develop a Cure for Alzheimer’s Disease
As reported by the science journal Nature, a new drug created by Biogen, a pharmaceutical company based in Massachusetts, appears to cure memory loss in a small trial. Researchers are optimistic even though additional studies need to be conducted to determine if the drug performs the same with a greater number of test subjects. The study’s co-author, Stephen Salloway said, ““This is the best news we’ve had in 25 years of doing Alzheimer’s research.”
The study included 165 people with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s Disease. The patients who received the highest dose of the new medication showed the most improvement. PET brain scans of patients who did not receive the drug remained mostly unchanged. The results are promising.
Nursing Home Patients with Alzheimer’s Disease
Because many Alzheimer’s patients are unable to take care of themselves at home, families make the difficult decision to place their loved one’s in a nursing home. Nursing homes provide the 24/7 medical and personal care Alzheimer’s patients require. Unfortunately, many Alzheimer’s patients are unaware of being abused due to their diminished mental capacity.
Therefore, family members need to be aware of the signs of nursing home abuse and watch for these signs very carefully. Frequent visits with family members in a nursing home can also reduce the risk of nursing home abuse. Signs of nursing home abuse that you should look for when visiting your loved one include:
- Unexplained weight loss, loss of appetite, or refusal to eat
- Mood swings, depression, and anxiety
- Bed sores
- Bruises, lacerations, and broken bones
- Fear of being left alone with or talking in front of the nursing home staff
- Unexplained changes in finances or missing personal items
- Sexually transmitted diseases or infections
- Poor hygiene or dirty clothing
- Poorly cleaned rooms and facilities
For more information on nursing home abuse and how to tell if your loved one is a victim, you can check the following resources:
- Kentucky Long-Term Care Ombudsman
- Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
- National Center on Elder Abuse
- National Institute on Aging
Call a Louisville Nursing Home Abuse Attorney for Help
If you suspect your loved one is the victim of abuse, our Louisville nursing home abuse attorney can help. Don’t hesitate to get help if you suspect abuse. Our attorneys offer free consultations so that you can get answers to your questions and learn how you can protect your loved one from nursing home abuse.