An estimated 4.5 million Americans have Alzheimer's Disease. It's hard enough to see what that debilitating illness takes away from your loved one, but since it tends to run in families, it's probably hard to watch the symptoms, and wonder if you or your children will end up the same way someday. You should know that having Alzheimer's in your family does not necessarily mean you're going to inherit the disease. Now, for the first time, there is a simple, saliva test on the market that could help you know if you carry a protein called Apoe, that is largely responsible for the development of the disease.
"We just need a sample of your saliva, it has to be dry on filter paper and this is actually all you have to do is send it in normally by mail to our laboratory and within a certain time you are going to get your result and we also give you advice as to whether you have to do one of two more tests or whether you are out of risk for Alzheimer's," says Dino Celeda M.D. at University Hospital in Munich, Germany. A person gets a test kit, performs the test and then mails it in. The machine used to perform the test is in Germany. Which is fitting since, Alois Alzheimer, who discovered the disease was, in fact, German. The results are returned to you in a couple of weeks, and if it shows that a person is at risk for Alzheimer's, you would want to talk to your doctor about lifestyle changes and preventive measures that could delay the onset of symptoms.
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