The Alzheimer disease is a neurodegenerative disease that forms the type of dementia that appears most frequently. Therefore, the patient begins to experience changes in memory, cognitive ability and habitual behavior.
Usually, these symptoms get worse as the pathology evolves in time and new ones appear. For example, alterations in the language (being the aphasia the most serious manifestation), irritability, etc. The early stages of the disease often go unnoticed.
The patients they are usually elderly, it is a more prevalent disease in women, which debuts in the sixth or seventh decade of life. As the pathology progresses, the patient goes from being slow to losing consciousness about their environment and about themselves.
The margin of loss of cognitive functions is greater the higher the IQ of the person before becoming ill. Further, the younger the patient, the faster the disease progresses. We must bear in mind that in evolution there are always fluctuations.
In these periods, the patient seems to have improved and his limitations are not as evident. This presents an obstacle when establishing an early diagnosis.
Currently the causes are unknown that lead to the presence of this problem. However, alterations in brain structure have been identified, such as the formation of senile plaques, neurofibrillary tangles and granulovascular degeneration.
These findings in the microscopic study reveal the existence of altered protein deposits. The most common is to find extracellular accumulations of beta-amyloid in the gray matter of the brain. Because the gray matter is mainly affected in Alzheimer’s disease, this condition is considered to be a cortical-type dementia.
As well certain risk factors have been identified that increase the risk of developing this disorder. Among the most important we can mention the genetic inheritance, the age and unhealthy habits like the consumption of tobacco and of alcohol.
Within the treatment we can differentiate different remedies like the use of medications or therapeutic sessions. Likewise, it has recently been discovered that a brain implant can also combat this type of disorders.
Brain implant to treat the symptoms of Alzheimer’s.
It is a procedure or a surgical intervention in which a reduced neurostimulator is implanted in the patient’s brain. As a general rule they are called implant devices for deep brain stimulation (DBS or Deep Brain Stimulation in English).
Usually you try to apply this treatment in the early stages of the disease, when it has shown more effectiveness.
This device can appear as a chip and is able to mimic the daily functioning of the nervous system affected by the pathology. We can also find the placement of fine wires in the brain to simulate lost connections.
In this way other capacities that deteriorate are stimulated with the evolution of the pathology. As a general rule, doctors or drugs can reduce the decrease in memory (both long-term and short-term). However, they can not encourage other common skills such as decision making, problem solving, organizing and planning ideas etc.
These functions they are usually managed by regions of our brain calls frontal lobes . This is the most frequent location of the implants since they are the activities that are most altered during the disorder.
According to the clinical tests some patients also presented a great improvement in their cognitive abilities.
One drawback of the procedure in the face of its numerous advantages is the excessive amount of time needed to verify improvement. As a general rule, these functions are usually enhanced after one or two years after neurosurgery.
Likewise, this kind of techniques are being used to treat other diseases neurodegenerative diseases, as is the case with parkinson . However, we are investigating the best implants that can be used to make the treatment more efficient.
To do this, experts think that within a decade the neurotransmitters will be completely elaborated.
As well new investigations are being carried out to discover new treatments that can alleviate the symptoms. In the future they could be applied without the need to perform an intervention on the patient.
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