March 19, 2015 |
Carol Harrison walks into her mother's nursing-home room, raises the blinds, lets in the morning light. "Hey, Mom, hey, good morning. " The daughter's voice is tender, as if waking a child. She kisses her mother's cheek. Strokes her hair. "Mom, hey, it's Carol Ann. It's Carol Ann. I'm here to see you. " No response. Grace Ward, 90, is under a blanket, in a recliner, eyes closed. She has had Alzheimer's disease for 15 years. For the last five, she hasn't uttered a coherent sentence, or recognized her daughter.
March 8, 2015 |
When I was in medical school at the end of the 20th century, I was taught that Alzheimer's disease was a rare cause of dementia in middle-aged adults. The elderly had senility caused by an indecipherable mess of pathologies and aging. Now, in the 21st century, Alzheimer's is called an epidemic. It has even helped five-time nominee Julianne Moore win her first Academy Award. In Still Alice, based on the novel of the same title, Moore portrays professor Alice Howland, who is diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease, and who suffers the relentless decay of her capacities.
March 6, 2015 |
Antonia Wallace Hamilton, 74, a Philadelphia native who worked in institutional development after returning here from Iowa in 1991, died Saturday, Feb. 28, at her Center City home. Her family and the Philadelphia Medical Examiner's Office confirmed that Mrs. Hamilton's death was a suicide. The cause was drug intoxication, said Jeff Moran, spokesman for the city's Department of Public Health. There will be no further investigation by the medical examiner, Moran said. In a statement Wednesday, Mrs. Hamilton's family said she had had Alzheimer's disease for 41/2 years.
February 20, 2015 |
Barbara Bitros has a lovely life. She lives in a beautiful restored barn in Langhorne, dates a kind man, sees her grandchildren twice a week. She woke up on a recent Monday and found her frying pan in her refrigerator. She has no idea when or why she put it there. Bitros, 64, is a former hospice nurse and educator who has seen many people with dementia die. She was so concerned about her own memory losses - entire blocks of time vanished, what she called intermittent amnesia - that she had herself tested by three neurologists: brain scans, a spinal tap, the full workup.
February 1, 2015 |
A CLINICAL neuropsychologist testified yesterday that charter school founder Dorothy June Brown has mild brain damage consistent with early stages of Alzheimer's disease. Dr. Barbara Malamut's testimony contradicted that of three court-appointed mental-health experts who took the stand earlier in the week during a competency hearing to determine whether Brown, 77, is fit to stand retrial for allegedly defrauding four schools of $6.3 million and conspiring with other administrators to conceal the crimes.
January 18, 2015 |
A week ago, Julianne Moore could be seen at the Golden Globes hobbing and nobbing with her begowned, betuxed colleagues at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, waiting for the list of nominees in the lead actress, drama category to be read. She was one of the five - for her heartbreaker of a performance as a brilliant linguistics professor diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer's in Still Alice . Finally, the names were called: Moore, Rosamund Pike ( Gone Girl ), Reese Witherspoon ( Wild )
January 16, 2015 |
Donald Jackson, 81, and his partner of more than 40 years, Myrna Roach, 74, are the kind of older people many of us would like to be one day. Both still work and are energetic enough to travel extensively. They take medicine for high blood pressure and he has diabetes, but they feel healthy. They like to join clinical trials and know from one that their mental abilities have been stable for years. Still, Roach has a strong family history of Alzheimer's disease. Jackson doesn't, but Alzheimer's is the disease he dreads above all others.
November 30, 2014 |
So far, the search for a treatment that will save our oldest generation from the scourge of Alzheimer's disease has been a long, frustrating slog. Paul Aisen, an Alzheimer's expert from the University of California, San Diego, explained why. For decades, researchers were dealing with a deadly disease that had no apparent symptoms for the first 15 years or so. When the symptoms started, they were not specific to Alzheimer's. By the time they got bad, the brain was already severely damaged.
November 23, 2014 |
Miriam E. McBride Rawley, 90, of Tacony, a mother and singer, died Friday, Nov. 14, of Alzheimer's disease at the Philadelphia Protestant Home in Lawncrest. Born in 1924 in Philadelphia, Mrs. Rawley lost her mother early. She and her four siblings grew up with their father, Francis McBride, and stepmother, Maude Whelan, on a horse farm in Hilltown, Bucks County. After the family moved back to the city, Mrs. Rawley became a member of the first graduating class of St. Hubert High School in 1942.
October 21, 2014 |
Laura and Matthew Reale don't scare easily. Consider that they married 15 years ago this month with no guaranteed income. So when life seemed to be unfairly piling on a few years ago, the Jenkintown couple did what entrepreneurs do at times of crisis: They adjusted. They became business partners, jettisoning what had been the more successful business (hers) to reimagine his. AquaReale, a Jenkintown-based eco-friendly landscape and water-features company with five employees, has doubled sales in four years and grown its customer base to 75, from just seven two years ago. Rough challenges forced the regrouping that led to a business rescue: "I had a kid with autism, a mother with Alzheimer's, and no source of income," Laura Reale, 44, recalled recently.