An international group of dementia experts is proposing a change in the definition of Alzheimer's disease. Members of the International Working Group for New Research Criteria for the Diagnosis of Alzheimer's Disease want to include recently discovered biomarkers in the diagnostic criteria for the disease, Reuters reported.
Brain scans and cerebrospinal fluid tests can identify biomarkers years before symptoms of Alzheimer's disease manifest themselves, according to members of the group. It is widely believed that the pre-clinical stage roughly 10 years before noticeable symptoms of Alzheimer's set in is the best time to begin interventional treatments that could help reduce the disease's impact.
Under the newly proposed guidelines, patients could be diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease if they had occasional memory loss, and at least one biomarker associated with Alzheimer's disease. The research group's recommendations are published in the medical journal The Lancet.
We have blogged about this before. One one hand knowing earlier helps people prepare. On the other hand, how much do we risk with misdiagnosis if these biomarkers do not result in manifestation of the disease.
What do you think? Would you want to know earlier?