When's a good time to diagnose an incurable disease?
As of now, given the uncertain relationship between the bio-markers and dementia, an early diagnosis would seem to offer little of use. As the new guidelines point out, the greatest risk factor for Alzheimer's is advanced old age—and you don't need a brain scan or a spinal tap to tell you you're a very senior citizen. At that point, even if you dodged the fate of Alzheimer's, you could fall prey to another kind of dementia. In the end, we're all bio-marked for death and decline.
Rebecca Tuhus-Dubrow is a writer in Somerville, Mass.
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