HealthWise at 5 From 5.7 - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

5/7/04

HealthWise at 5 From 5.7

  • New Method To Diagnose Alzheimer's

There may be a new way to diagnose Alzheimer's Disease, researchers say it appears that less blood flow in a certain part of the brain makes those people 16 times for likely to have Alzheimer's Disease than some other type of dementia.

In the study, researchers used specialized brain scans to measure blood flow in the elderly. And the scan showed that most of those with Alzheimer's Disease had reduced blood flow in a region of the brain responsible for processing information.

Researchers say this tool along with clinical evaluation may be the most accurate test to date to find and diagnose Alzheimer's Disease. The study was conducted by researchers at University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas.

The study was published in the Journal of Nuclear Medicine. Alzheimer's Disease affects approximately 4 million Americans. Symptoms can include memory loss, personality changes, and trouble communicating and understanding. A spect is a radioisotope test that produces a three-dimensional picture of blood flow in the brain.

  • Embryo Adoption

Millions of women in this country want to have a baby, but can't. Infertility affects one in six couples. But there are new opportunities for couples to have children. One is a program called Snowflakes, it allows couples who want to get pregnant, to adopt embryos from families who have extra from their own fertility treatments. Dr. Gloria Halverson, fertility expert

"It's significantly less cost and gives them a lot of hope they too can have a family," says Dr. Gloria Halverson, fertility expert.

Dr. Halverson says there are 400,000 frozen embryos in this country right now. Snowflakes is an embryo adoption process that's not necessarily anonymous. Prospective parents can get pictures and a little background information about the genetic parents. For more information about the Snowflakes program ( click here).

  • Pink Eye

As the weather warms up, cold and flu season wind down but did you know we're right in the middle of pink eye season which starts late in the Winter and goes through the Spring. It is particularly a concern in day cares because it's common among youngsters and highly contagious.

Here's what to watch for: in the early stages, pink eye can just be itchy, red and sticky. But the worse it gets, the more the eye may begin to drain mucus. The good news is, unless it's severe, pink eye can be treated with antibiotic eye drops. In the meantime, if someone brings pink eye into your family, remember that the best way to keep it from spreading is lots of hand washing.

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