It's understandable that people with Alzheimer's may forget to take their medication but an innovative treatment can help.
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Male Speaker: It's starts with normal slip such as misplacing keys or a wallet until finally a family name is forgotten. This is a reality of a Alzheimer’s disease which affects an estimated 450,000 Canadians and their families. The disease attacks memory and ability to do normal everyday activities and takes a large toll on the patient and caregivers. Medications to treat the symptoms have been available, but they can be difficult for some patients to take and can cause side affect such as nausea resulting in half of Alzheimer disease patients stopping treatment after a just a few months. Mrs Anne West: Alzheimer disease should be perceived as a family disease. It involves the whole family, the patient, the caregiver and any family members that come in contact with the patient. They have to learn to live with the disease as well as the caregiver does. Now there is a noble approach to treat Alzheimer disease; Health Canada has recently approved Exelon Patch the first and only skin patch for the treatment of mild to moderate Alzheimer. This patch results in consistent delivery of the medication and fewer side affects. It's easy to use; no pills to swallow or to remember. Doctor Sandra Black specializes in the treatment of Alzheimer disease in Toronto. Sandra Black: So the idea of having a patch is attractive because it allows a smoother uptake of the medication and it often can be used once a day. So this would be a big advantage for caregivers and for patients because it makes the drug easier to use and it also happens to be the case that it's better tolerated. So in the case of Exelon which is the drug that’s going to be in this new patch, patients can now take it once a day as oppose to twice a day and it has a much better side affect profile. Male Speaker: Exelon patch is applied easily to the back, chest or upper arm and provide smooth and continuous delivery of medication through the skin over 24 hours. Scott Dudgeon, CEO of the Alzheimer’s Society of Canada says, new treatment option will help to better manage the disease for patients. Scott Dudgeon: People are going to respond differently to different medications so it is very important in declinations and the people are being treated have access to new and innovative ways of dealing with the disease. Male Speaker: The patch was designed with compliance in mind according to an international study the patch was preferred to capsules as a method of drug delivery by more than 70% of Alzheimer’s caregiver. This treatment provides caregivers visual reassurance that the medication has been administered reducing some of the burden associated with caring for a loved one affected by Alzheimer’s disease. Mrs Anne West: The use of Transdermal Patch would simplify treatment with my husband in that -- he occasionally forgets his pills. Mr. Fred West: Like I did last night. Mrs Anne West: Yes Male Speaker: By 2030 the number of Canadians with Alzheimer disease has expected to rise to 750,000. It's estimated that 35% of Canadians aged 85 or older have or will get Alzheimer disease. For more information about Alzheimer disease or treatment option speak with your doctor; Brian Wisc reporting.