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Alzheimers Specialist

Shankle Clinic

Neurology Specialists located in Newport Beach, CA

Alzheimer’s is one of the most feared diseases in the United States, according to research by MetLife. A precise diagnosis followed by a custom-designed treatment plan designed by the expert team of neurologists at Shankle Clinic, led by William Shankle, MS, MD, FACP, helps slow Alzheimer’s progression. Shankle Clinic is located within the Hoag Neurosciences Institute in Newport Beach, California. To set up an Alzheimer’s evaluation for yourself, a parent, or other loved one, contact the knowledgeable staff by phone or use the online form.

Alzheimers Q & A

What is Alzheimer’s disease?

Alzheimer’s disease is characterized by the progressive degeneration and death of brain cells, which leads to memory problems, cognitive difficulties, and the loss of social skills and independence. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, Alzheimer’s is the sixth-leading cause of death in the United States. Alzheimer’s is more deadly than breast cancer and prostate cancer combined.

Who gets Alzheimer’s disease?

Though most women and men with Alzheimer’s in the US are over age 65, about 200,000 have early-onset Alzheimer’s. Because Alzheimer’s is progressive, symptoms worsen over time. You’re more at risk for Alzheimer’s if you:

  • Are over 65
  • Have a family history of Alzheimer’s
  • Experienced a traumatic brain injury (TBI)
  • Have cardiovascular disease
  • Are Latino or African-American
  • Have a history of stroke

Keeping your heart, brain, and body healthy by adopting lifestyle changes such as improving diet, losing weight, and exercising may prevent or delay Alzheimer’s.

What are the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease?

Alzheimer’s is not the same as age-related forgetfulness and isn’t a normal part of aging. Some warning signs of Alzheimer’s are:

  • Forgetting recent events and conversations
  • Repeating information 
  • Trouble keeping track of things
  • Getting lost while driving to familiar locations
  • Confusion about dates and times
  • Vision problems
  • Using the wrong words to describe common objects
  • Losing things and accusing people of stealing
  • Using poor judgment with money
  • Changes in personality and appearance

Early evaluation helps someone in the early stages of Alzheimer’s get the care they need to slow the disease’s progression.

How do doctors treat Alzheimer’s?

If your neurologist at Shankle Clinic diagnoses Alzheimer’s disease, they tailor the treatment plan to the stage of your disease and current symptoms. Some therapies include:

Cholinesterase inhibitors

FDA-approved Cognex®, Aricept®, Razadyne®, and Exelon® increase the availability of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine and slow production of beta-amyloid plaques, which are the primary cause of Alzheimer’s disease.

Glutamate receptor modulators

FDA-approved Namenda® blocks neuronal suicide and facilitates the release of normal amounts of glutamate, which is needed for proper brain communication. Namenda may also block the formation of neurofibrillary tangles that occur with Alzheimer’s disease.

Lifestyle changes and therapy

Medications may delay disease progression by up to six years. Adopting a healthy diet, adding more exercise and activities, and getting social support can also improve or delay Alzheimer’s.

To set up an Alzheimer’s evaluation, contact Shankle Clinic by calling or using the online form.