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New Scan May Help Detect Alzheimer’s Earlier

Developments in Alzheimer’s research have led to a new dye-based brain scan to better diagnosis patients. Starting in June 2012, the brain scan will be utilized for patients who may show early signs of Alzheimer’s, memory loss, depression, or cognitive decline.

The new radioactive dye, which was approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration in early April, is called Amyvid. It clings to a protein called amyloid, which is prevalent in the brains of those affected with Alzheimer’s.

The dye, which will turn fluorescent when it sticks to the protein, under a PET scan, can help doctors catch Alzheimer’s at an earlier stage. The lack of amyloid in the brain can help eliminate Alzheimer’s as a diagnosis, however, the presence of it does not necessarily mean it is Alzheimer’s. Other cognitive illnesses may be linked to the protein as well.

Doctors will be receiving online and in-person training on the correct way to use the dye and interpret results, which is a main concern of the FDA of this dye in its earliest stages of implementation.


Call a senior living community near you to learn about local memory screenings.