Medications & Clinical Trials

Medication

Currently, there are several Alzheimer’s drugs that treat the symptoms of Alzheimer’s — temporarily helping memory and thinking problems in about half of the people who take them. But these medications do not treat the underlying causes of Alzheimer’s.

Although there is no cure, Alzheimer’s medications can temporarily slow the worsening of symptoms and improve quality of life for those with Alzheimer’s and their caregivers. It is best to check with your doctor to determine the appropriate course of medical treatment.

Clinical Trials

Clinical trials are research studies conducted in people to determine whether treatments are safe and effective. Clinical trials are the best way for researchers to find new ways to detect, slow, treat and hopefully someday prevent Alzheimer’s disease.

Types of clinical research include:

• Treatment trials to test new treatments or new combinations of treatments
• Diagnostic studies to find new tests or procedures for diagnosing a disease or condition
• Prevention trials to investigate ways to prevent the onset of diseases
• Screening studies to test methods to identify diseases or conditions at the earliest stages
• Quality of life studies to look at different ways to improve quality of life for individuals who have a chronic illness, their caregivers and family members

Information about Alzheimer’s disease clinical trials and studies is available through a number of sources. First, talk to your doctor, who may know about local or specific research studies that may be right for you. NIA-supported Alzheimer’s Disease Centers or specialized memory or neurological clinics in your community may also be conducting trials. You might also learn of clinical trials through newspapers or other media. To search more widely for trials or studies, you can also visit web sites like ClinicalTrials.gov or the NIA Alzheimer’s Disease Education and Referral (ADEAR) Center clinical trials databas

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