• Printer Friendly Version
  • Decrease Text Size
  • Increase Text Size
  • PDF

Tuesday, February 6, 2024

This New Test Could Be a Game Changer for Alzheimer's Disease Diagnosis and Care

Posted By: Advancing Care

Medically reviewed by Haythum Tayeb, MBChB

A recent study reveals promising news about a blood test that could revolutionize screening for Alzheimer's disease, a brain disorder that affects memory and thinking skills.

This new method of detection has demonstrated high accuracy even before symptoms appear. Here’s what you need to know about the blood test:

  • Protein screening: Identifies a protein called phosphorylated tau (p-tau), specifically p-tau217, a key biomarker for Alzheimer's.
  • Accuracy: Shows remarkable precision—up to 97 percent for identifying people with pathological brain changes indicative of Alzheimer’s disease — matching advanced methods like brain scans and cerebrospinal fluid tests.
  • Accessibility: Offers a more accessible and cost-effective screening option, unlike current methods.
  • Early detection: Can detect Alzheimer's disease risk even before symptoms surface, promising early diagnosis.
  • Margin for error: Accurately predicts key Alzheimer's brain changes, but doesn't guarantee that everyone with these brain changes will develop the disease symptoms.

The blood test is currently available for research use only; however, it is expected to be available for clinical use soon.

More than 6 million Americans are currently grappling with dementia linked to Alzheimer’s disease, a number expected to double in the next two decades, reaching approximately 13 million by 2050.

The bottom line? The new blood test presents a game-changing opportunity for Alzheimer's disease screening, providing a simple, accurate and accessible method that could transform early diagnosis and patient care.

If you have questions about the blood test or if you or loved one are experiencing symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease or dementia, don’t hesitate to reach out to our specialists at WMCHealth Physicians or Bon Secours Medical Group for a consultation.