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Tucson Social Security Disability Blog

A New Alzheimer's Drug Sparks Heated Debate

Posted by John Kuhnlein | Oct 22, 2021 | 0 Comments

One of the cruelest of all medical conditions is Alzheimer's Disease (AD.) Most people have at least heard of AD and likely have a family member or friend who suffers from it.  This dreadful impairment affects the brain and robs people of their memories. As AD progresses, it leaves its victims ever more debilitated, until they eventually succumb.

A New Wonder Drug? Or A Drug To Wonder About?

It is little wonder, then, that both the medical community and the general public have clamored for effective treatments. At present, there is nothing that works

What's In This Pill, Anyway?

well. But, a new drug called Aduhelm is sparking an intense discussion. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently approved Aduhelm to treat the symptoms of AD. But, rather than the end of the debate, this was the jumping-off point.

Undue Influence?

One major concern is whether the FDA acted appropriately in approving Aduhelm.  Many agencies are calling for an investigation into how Biogen, the drug's manufacturer, got Aduhelm approved. This includes the acting commissioner of the FDA. There is no evidence yet of bad behavior. But, at $56,000 per year per patient, it is evident that Biogen had a strong motivation to get this drug onto the market.

Most Doctors Not Convinced

Most doctors who treat AD are skeptical. A survey of physicians found that most of them do not think Aduhelm works and they do not plan to prescribe it. Two very prominent health centers, the Cleveland Clinic and Mt. Sinai in New York, will not administer Aduhelm to their patients.

Tiny Memory Improvements And Significant Side Effects

Did You Say Brain Bleeds?

If you are wondering why Aduhelm is controversial, consider this: two trials by Biogen showed a minuscule improvement for some patients and zero improvements for the rest. On the other hand, 40% of the patients in the two studies suffered brain bleeding or brain swelling.

Proceed With Caution

If you or a loved one is contemplating taking Aduhelm, be very careful. The last thing you want to do is make the situation worse than it already is. Brain swelling and brain bleeding are not trivial side effects.

As always, never make a medical decision based on what you read here.

About the Author

John Kuhnlein

Since 1992, I have been helping the people of Southern Arizona get the benefits they are due. Before devoting all my efforts to assisting people with Social Security disability claims, I also handled such complex lawsuits as medical malpractice and products liability. I brought to my Social Security cases all the skills and attention to detail that I developed in the courtroom. I approach each Social Security disability case as if it were a million-dollar lawsuit. For the people trying to get Social Security benefits, their claim is every bit as important. Because I have personally handled so many Social Security cases, I have refined the skills I need to win your case for you. I have helped people win cases for every kind of ailment from arthritis to valley fever. At present, I am focused on helping those persons with neurological and orthopedic disorders. Because claims for people over age fifty bring additional complications, I particularly seek out those cases to work on. I regularly write about back and spine conditions on my blog. I actively seek out the latest information about orthopedic and neurological disorders to ensure I can represent my clients as effectively as possible. Because of my current focus, I regret that I am not able to take any cases for mental disorders. If you are over age fifty and suffer from any orthopedic or neurological disorder, please contact me at once.

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