Latin Americans are 50% more likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease than non-Latin whites, but are much less likely to seek treatment or assistance.
Degenerative brain disease, for which there is currently no cure, is a terrible sacrifice for those suffering from the disease and those who care for it. And as the Latino population ages, it is estimated that by 2060, approximately 3.5 million Latino Americans will suffer from the disease.
David Marquez, a professor of kinematics and nutrition at the University of Illinois at Chicago and a leader in the Latin core of the Rush Alzheimer’s Disease Center, said that the reasons Latin Americans are vulnerable to the disease are “almost irrelevant.” I have. It is related to the lives of Latin Americans and their opportunities in the United States, such as “being a Latin American in fact.”
One of the reasons for the surge in numbers is that there are more Latin Americans in the United States than ever before.
“In that sense, more and more people are getting Alzheimer’s disease or related dementia,” Marquez said.
The low level of formal education may also be a factor in the slightly higher risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease, Marquez says. He states that researchers believe that people can develop so-called “cognitive reserves” when they are young.
“In a sense, the more you can move your brain when you’re young, the more you can build that reserve for when you’re old,” Marquez said. “There are many Latin Americans in the United States who have a low level of formal education and probably not cognitive stimuli, but do more manual labor-type jobs without cognitive stimuli. That’s why it can be difficult for Latin Americans to build their reserves over time, and that’s not because they’re Latino. It’s not like culture from their heritage. No. That’s the situation in the United States. “
Marquez said there is increasing evidence that other chronic illnesses, such as diabetes and depression, may increase the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease later.
“That is not because they are Latino Americans, but many Latino Americans in the United States have these chronic and chronic illnesses, and it is a reality that they increase the risk of Alzheimer’s disease in later years,” Marquez said. Says.
Dr. Maria Carolina Morapinzon, a preventive medicine doctor and scientist at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Wisconsin Alzheimer Institute, said Latin Americans could move relatives to home care facilities and access other forms of assistance. It says it is unlikely to do so.
“I’ve heard from people looking for services that families aren’t available,” says Mora Pinzón. “It’s either a problem of access they don’t qualify for, or insurance doesn’t cover these types of services.”
She also states that lack of Spanish service is also a factor, but culture is also a factor in discouraging Latin families from seeking outside help.
“There is a cultural aspect that makes us feel more comfortable taking care of ourselves and the idea of putting our family in a long-term care facility,” Mora Pinzon said.
Last month, the Food and Drug Administration approved the first new drug for Alzheimer’s disease since 2003. However, Alzheimer’s disease experts immediately asked questions about the drugs sold under the brand name Aduhelm. Initially, the FDA approved the drug for all patients with Alzheimer’s disease, but changed its guidance earlier this week and now recommends using the drug for patients with only mild symptoms.
“We know how the drug works,” said Mora Pinzón. “This drug affects amyloid plaques in the brain. It is one of the substances (related to Alzheimer’s disease). This drug shows some benefits to a small number of people, but more information. Indeed, the FDA’s decision is controversial. “
Mora Pinzon said one of the criticisms leveled by the drug company Biogen was that the drug’s trials did not include enough color.
“Everyone agrees that we still need more research. More research is needed to see if the drug’s effects are sustainable over the long term.
She believes that the actual cure for Alzheimer’s disease is probably years away.
“I think we will eventually have a cure,” said Mora Pinzón. “I don’t think it will happen soon … I hope it’s wrong.”
If you want to know more about Alzheimer’s disease and its impact on the Latin community, it is sponsored by the Alzheimer’s Disease Foundation. Chicago Latin American Health Brain Summit July 23rd.
Latino Americans Are at High Risk of Developing Alzheimer’s Disease – Less likely to Get Help | Chicago News
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