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They might use me as a world-class example!

April 2, 2012

In my obsessive Googling about mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and Alzheimer’s disease, I came across a press release about an ongoing study conducted by the Emory University School of Medicine and Atlanta Veterans Affairs Medical Center. Researchers have been testing techniques to help people with MCI; this particular study focuses on remembering the location of household objects. I jumped at the researchers’ suggestion that this memory-building strategy might stimulate activity in the hippocampus, a part of the brain that plays a crucial role in the formulation of new memories. The press release listed a phone number for interested participants. I nearly fell out of my chair as I seized the phone.

After a series of preliminary interviews, both via telephone and in person, Daddy was selected for the study. Apparently being left-handed or sporting above-waist tattoos, along with other seemingly arbitrary criteria, disqualifies prospective candidates.

The study comprises five sessions. The first day includes an MRI; the second through fourth days involve actual memory training; and the fifth day wraps up with a final MRI to track any increased brain function.

The researcher I spoke with claimed that many participants have felt more confident after the conclusion of the study. The memory techniques are like exercise, though – Daddy can’t engage in training for a few days, experience benefits and stop practicing to expect long-term results. If Daddy sticks with it, he can greatly enhance the quality of his day-to-day routine. He says he’s willing to do anything to regain some memory.

“They might use me as a world-class example!” he said.

I clearly think the world of Daddy, which means I want him to receive the best medication, therapy, counseling and other resources available. Hopefully the study will help him remember where he put everything except the hot dogs, bologna and chocolate.

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. Timber permalink
    April 22, 2012 7:35 pm

    I’m afraid we’re simply going to have to hide the food or not have it in the house. The refrigerator is just WAY too conspicuous.

  2. April 22, 2012 8:52 pm

    Yes, it seems that more people would use the “don’t buy junk food” technique…

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