A new way to prevent the looming Alzheimer's epidemic could be a key stroke away.
A new website launched by the Alzheimer's Association called TrialMatch links patients with clinical trials that treat their specific case.
"One of the critical deficiencies we have now is recruiting people fast enough for trials, and at this rate we may not get the treatments we need before it wrecks the medical care system," says Bill Thies, Chief Medical and Scientific Officer for the Alzheimer's Association.
Patients, caregivers and doctors can log on to the website, or call a 24-hour hotline, to start the matching process.
"We estimate there are over 100 total trials," adds Thies.
Those who participate have access to new medications, doctors who are familiar with the disease, and state-of-the-art treatment.
Even if patients don't find help for themselves, their participation may help someone else.
"They're giving back to society in a very personal way," observes Thies. "Society will benefit because we know more at the end of the trial than we did at the beginning."
Right now half a million americans are diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease every year.
That number is expected to double by 2050.