welcome to the organic green doctor blog

i am a family physician who was diagnosed with
early mild cognitive impairment(mci) amnestic type on december 21, 2010
this is a precursor to alzheimers disease
because of this diagnosis i have opted to stop practicing medicine
this blog will be about my journey with this disease
please feel free to follow me along this path
i will continue blogging on organic gardening, green living,
solar power, rainwater collection, and healthy living
i will blog on these plus other things noted to be interesting

Monday, September 30, 2019

organicgreendoctor: the flu is here

organicgreendoctor: the flu is here: THE FLU IS HERE i read an article this morning online that said the flu was here in small numbers so far it will last the flu season unt...

the flu is here

Image result for cdc flu shots
i read an article this morning online that said the flu was here
in small numbers so far
it will last the flu season until around april of 2020


when should you get the flu shot

it takes about 2 weeks for the shot to reach its full effect in preventing the flu
it should last until the end of the flu season ie april 2020

who should get the flu shot

why everyone
there is a term herd immunity
you immunize the herd ie all of us so the flu germ isnt getting spread around as we go to school
go to church go to sporting events go around the world etc
coughing and touching things easily spreads the germs
the less folks get the flu the less flu we see

where is the easiest place to catch the flu
the pit of infectious diseases
all teachers can answer that one


when do you get your flu shot

i am over 65
i volunteer at a school
schoolteachers yall are at hi risk for getting the flu
i am around someone who cant afford to get the flu
the rule is
if you want to be around mr h with his chronic renal failure being on steroids waiting for a transplant mr h
then you 100% have to have the flu shot
no exceptions
i was on an experimental drug aducanumab that can make you prone to getting infections

will mr h get his shot 
yes he will get his shot or he may have already got it
he may have to get 2 shots 1 month apart
sorry mr h
he cant afford to get the flu

did his great grandma grandmas grandpas parents aunts uncles who are around them get theirs
yes and they all plan to get theirs soon

cant you get the flu from the flu shot
despite what folks say its impossible to get the flu from the flu shot

its not a live virus
its like riding a dead horse
you cant

but ive got sick after getting my shot
but it wasnt the flu from the flu shot
when you get the flu shot proteins called antigens that are broken off and given to us
these antigens are like the fingers of the virus
when you are exposed to these fingers you start to build antibodies to the viruses
this reaction can cause low grade fever body aches
when i get my flu shot i expect to get that reaction
i want that reaction
it means the flu shot is working

i got the flu shot but got the flu
if you got exposed to the flu before or just after you got the flu shot you might still get the flu
it is not a 100% shot
its a 40-60% effective shot                     
that means a certain % of folks who got the shot wont be protected
remember that herd thing
if everyone gets the flu shot there will not be as many folks getting the flu

who should get it
as i wrote everyone over 6 months old

who really should get the shot
anyone around someone with a chronic illness
anyone with diseases like mr h has and those on steroids and immunsuppressive drugs like those with crohns disease ulcerative colitis rheumatoid arthrits psoriatic arthritis psoriasis lupus asthma heart disease kidney disease diabetes all kids over 65ers chemo patients pregnant ladies those in the family where someone is pregnant or has a new baby and many other chronic diseases

do kids have to get 2 shots
yes some kids have to get 2 flu shots 1 month apart

around 1000+- kids die each year from the flu
around 50000+- adults die each year from the flu
the sickest patients of mine who had the flu many ended up on ventilators
were kids and young adult females
the vaccine has 3 different strands
if the scientists guess right then it will be an effective vaccine
sometimes like with the h1n1 virus a few years ago a new strand pops up and makes things worse

wash your hands
cough into your elbow
get your flu shot
stay away from susceptible folks if you get the flu
stay at home

so really how well the us responds to the flu each year is usually determined by how many of us go out and get our flu shot

get yours today
save a live
maybe yours

the organicgreen doctor

Friday, September 27, 2019

organicgreendoctor: alzheimers news-will its use for pain help alzheim...

organicgreendoctor: alzheimers news-will its use for pain help alzheim...: ALZHEIMERS NEWS-WILL ITS USE FOR PAIN HELP ALZHEIMERS RESEARCH i can legally walk about 4 blocks and walk into the store and buy several d...

alzheimers news-will its use for pain help alzheimers research

Image result for organicgreendoctor
i can legally walk about 4 blocks and walk into the store and buy several different doses of cbd to take to take long term to see if it will slow down my alzheimers disease from progressing

cbd has antiinflammatory effects that may help to slow down the neuroinflammation that occurs up in my brain as the disease progresses
slowing down this neuroinflammation along with other things i am doing like taking care of my health eating right exercising and taking aricept (donepezil) might if i am lucky slow down this disease progression up in my brain

its that antiinflammatory effects that helps with pain control
its this effect that may help in alzheimers disease
let say instead of going 100 mph you can slow the alzheimers so it only goes 25 mph so that it takes longer to get to its destination ie death from alzheimers disease
the cliff that those with the diagnosis fall off of eventually

so anything i can do to slow the speed of this disease i want to do it
thats why i have done all those things above
thats why i have done those alzheimers research studies and plan to do more treatment studies when i can requalify ie after march 2020

Image result for epidiolex

so why dont i just go down there and buy me some cbd to take every day
the true scientific research hasnt been done yet
its hampered by the fact that cbd is classified as a schedule one drug like heroin is
a cbd drug approved by the fda for use in rare epilepsy called epidiolex is a schedule 5 drug
it cost $32,500 a year
i said
i can just walk five blocks and get cbd for less than i pay for some of my prescription meds
yes thats cbd in capsule form that i have in my possession

this is the reason many folks arent using the epidiolex but instead go to their local dispensary to buy cbd to take

i talked to someone the other day that uses it to control hand tremors
the prescription meds dont work well
the cbd does

so why am i writing about cbd use

the federal government just approved 3 million dollars to research the use of cbd for pain control
no they cant study the thc component
the cbd has to be only gotten for the research from that pot farm in mississippi that the fda owns
someone needs to remove that corn cob from you know where

now 3 million dollars seems like a lot for research
its not

a study needs to be designed to study folks long term who are prealzheimers or mild cognitive impariment and give them cbd at different doses
this study will be expensive
it make cost millions to do
you need a 1,000 folks to study
they need neurological exams memory testing lots of blood work genetic tests spinal taps mri scans amyvid pet scans
when you add that up it comes to 10-100 times what the government has approved for the pain research study

the only folks who can afford that research are the federal government with monies added from the alzheimers association
to get a drug company to isolate one of the cbd components
patent it
do all the expensive research
you got it
$32,500 a year for me to take it

this study that needs to be done very well will not happen in my lifetime
maybe the millennials and the generation x folks will change all this

so thats what i may be left with
could just turn left out of our condo
walk for about a mile
turn left
walk up to the door
open it
buy my cbd that is made up of probably hundreds of different cbd compounds
start taking it
not knowing if it really will work or not
i am not going to pay some drug company all that money

whats the answer
the feds need to spend the money for the research
even better since there is tons of money in the marijuana world right now
they should fund the research i mean really true scientific research like at an university
to find out if this stuff really works

oh thats right
its not legal to do that
we are left with anecdotal treatment

the organicgreen doctor

Thursday, September 26, 2019

organicgreendoctor: santa barbara country n news-the black composter

organicgreendoctor: santa barbara country n news-the black composter: SANTA BARBARA COUNTRY N NEWS-THE BLACK COMPOSTER one night i was sitting at a gettogether of the walk to end alzheimers committee here in ...

santa barbara country n news-the black composter


one night i was sitting at a gettogether of the walk to end alzheimers committee here in santa barbara at a local pizza parlor
an advisor from the edward jones folks was sitting across from me
they are the national sponsor for the walk to end alzheimers

i had worked with her for several months on the committee
she got to talking with me about gardening and rainwater harvesting
she said
i have these rainwater tanks and this black composter at my house that you can have to use in your school garden
she later brought them to the garden

the life of the black composter in the school garden began two years ago

last year we harvested well over a thousand worms from the black composter along with several 5 gallon buckets of compost that the school kids or kindergardeners as i call them help to produce
many brought left over scraps from home and from their lunches and snacks and dumped them into the black composter
any plant material removed from the garden area was composted there also

all the fertilizer used in the garden here is from that black composter and the blue worm composter

the kids understand at the end of the year how to make compost and use it in the garden
the best thing is they get to eat the veggies they grow

if they plant it
they will eat it
so this week it was time to restart the black composter

all of the material left from last year was removed
the old compost and remaining worms were saved
i would say we started with about 10 worms
we added greens and browns
old clippings from the community garden flowers
old leaves saved from last years leaf fall
shreds and shreds of old newspapers
shovels of coffee grounds
the old compost
each kindergardener took a handful or trowel full or a sheet of newspaper and placed it in the composter
it was then watered in well by filling up a red coffee can with water and dumping it on the heap

there were 21 kindergardeners that i worked with 3 or 4 at a time
the materials were all mixed up well as we went

they will add food scraps from home and their lunches and any garden debris that we get
eg we are about to remove the old tomatoes and weeds and pumpkin vines
they will all go into the compost pile

at the end of the year the compost will be removed  and spread on the garden to rest it for the summer
we usually count the worms also at this time

last year we had each kindergardener count 10 worms
then put them in a tray
when we got 10 trays full
we put them in a 100 worm tray
when we got 10 trays full of 100
we put them in the 1000 tray

so they learned to count to 1000 that day

as we finished we spied some caterpillars on the millkweeds in our flower bed
each kindergardener searched for more
we found 9 more
hopefully one day we will see monarchs flutter around the garden
we have a tropical milkweed which they like but its not the one that works the best for monarchs
the best are the native milkweeds which we have several planted in our garden

the kindergardners
learned how to make compost
learned about the monarch caterpillars

its fun and learning day every thursday morning in our school garden

this week we will plant multiplying onions in our new garden pot
the onions are left over from last years class
we will also plant some cover crops in our new garden soil the kids made in our flower bed
to include our jack in the bean stalk bean and peas and vetch and oats
the beans stalk will be used to see if it will get taller than the tallest kindergardener
last year one kindergardener won
later this fall we will scatter native wildflowers in that bed also for a spring wildflower blooming

its all good in the school garden

the organicgreen doctor

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

organicgreendoctor: my story revisited 22-updated facts and figures

organicgreendoctor: my story revisited 22-updated facts and figures: MY STORY REVISITED 22-UPDATED FACTS AND FIGURES almost 8.5 years ago i posted these facts and figures on alzheimers disease here is how t...

my story revisited 22-updated facts and figures

Image result for organicgreendoctor
almost 8.5 years ago i posted these facts and figures on alzheimers disease
here is how they have changed in that time since i was diagnosed

its still officially the 6th leading cause of death in the us
its the 5th leading cause of death in those over 65
some authorities believe its more like the 3rd leading cause of death since its under reported on death certificates
it still the only one of the top 10 that can not be cured treated or prevented

during 2000-2017 the mortality rates for alzheimers disease has increased by 145%
this is more than doubled the rate since i was diagnosed
1 in 3 senior folks die with alzheimers or other dementia

alzheimers and other dementias will cost us 195 billion dollars in 2019
by 2050 that number will be 1.1 trillion dollars
when i was diagnosed it was 183 billion dollars
thats a large increase in 8.5 years

someone develops the disease in the us every 65 seconds
when i was diagnosed it was every 68 seconds
8 years ago it was every 66 seconds
folks the clock is ticking against us
its predicted in a few years to be every 33 seconds

there are 5.8 million living with this disease now in the us
when i was diagnosed it was 5.5 million folks

when you compare the facts and figures from 2010 to 2019
you can easily see that this disease is marching on without us really
doing anything to stop it

can we afford not to do something


facts and figures for alzheimers
look in the mirror and you will see a person affected by
alzheimers in some way

it is the 6th leading cause of death in the united states
it is the only one in the top ten that can not be cured,
prevented, or slowed down (sucks doesnt it)

the mortality rates for those top ten diseases have gone
down from 2000-2008 except for alzheimers which has risen
by 66%

there are 15 million caregivers of  patients with alzheimers and
dementia giving 17 billion hours of unpaid care at a cost of
$202 billion
these caregivers suffer a great degree of stress and health issues
themselves because of the prolonged care they have to provide

someone develops the disease every 66 seconds in the us
in 15 years that will increase to every 33 seconds
the cost will double in that period of time

from the alzheimers association at www.alz.org facts and figures

so my suggestion in 2019 is
take care of your health
support your local alzheimers walks
encourage congress to continue to support alzheimers research and education

the organicgreen doctor

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

organicgreendoctor: tour of BIGGEST little farm

organicgreendoctor: tour of BIGGEST little farm: TOUR OF BIGGEST little FARM the name of the farm is apricot lane farms when you see the movie biggest little farms you will understand w...

tour of BIGGEST little farm

the name of the farm is apricot lane farms
when you see the movie biggest little farm you will understand where its name comes from
one of the stars of the film is emma pictured just above
yes i saw emma and her daughter pictured at the top of the blog

after seeing the movie twice and once listening to a q&a with the farmer and his wife i knew i had to go visit this place on one of their tours
my wife she saw it 4 times since different folks wanted her to go with them
so she did
as she says id see it again
she plans to order the dvd so that ms b can watch it
warning though this is a real farm and real things happen sometimes on the farm that a 4 year old might not understand
its called the circle of life on the farm and ranch

so it took us two months to get tickets for the tour of the farm
there were so many folks trying to go it crashed their website two months in a row
they now have a website that is upgraded and works better

so my wife she actually sat and refreshed her order for 2 hours
even then she wasnt sure she had tickets until the bill came up on our credit card
i emailed the farm and yes they verified that we had won the farm tour lottery

we got 4 tickets not 2 tickets
so we invited two relatives to go with us

i must say i was excited
i even skipped my daily nap ritual that day
i was wide awake and alert throughout the tour

you can click on their website to access their dvd and more information and to see an aerial view of the farm

this regenerative farm when it started was dry hardpan soil with no life in the soil and no greenery
when you look at the aerial view you can see how much it has been transformed
they had to use rock bars and digging equipment just to dig the soil
there was no water on the property
when it rained it was like a flash flood as it ran off their hilly terrain rapidly down eventually going to the ocean carrying all kinds of top soil and debris with it

it the rainwater mostly stays on the farm soaking into the renewed soil and the large pond that is now on the farm
the pond and its surrounding greenery has bought all kinds of life to live around it

the first part of the tour is the worm composter
it is about 8 ft wide x 40 ft x 4 feet deep
they use the worm compost to make compost tea which is spread out on the crops and pastures and fruit trees

it is the lifeblood of the farm
it was the first thing that was built on the farm

there is a rule
you take a $5 tree and put it in a $50 hole
thats what they have done
they have a long term plan to build up the soil to the point they can have a profitable sustainable farm

during the tour i was reminded of the tour of the bamberger ranch near san antonio where they did something like this on a depleted old cattle ranch
in the orchards they use cover crops in between the rows of fruit
now in this picture above they have stopped watering the crops so the cover crops have died down but will return when the fall rains start
we can go for 6-8 month without rain here
they do have ground well water they can access but during droughts its use gets limited
the sheep come through and eat the cover crops and deposit their manures to fertilize the fruit trees
when the snails come through attacking the trees they release the ducks into the area and the ducks remove the snails

they have over 750 laying chickens and 250 fryers who live in portable large chicken tractors
that they move from pasture to pasture
at the farmers market all their eggs are gone in less than an hour

they take the cattle and run them in small pastures for a few days
then they move the cattle over to another small pasture
they then let the chickens in the first pasture to eat all the fly larva and any insects on the pasture and scratch around in the sol
when its all cleaned up that area is rested so the grass can regrow
the chickens are moved then to the second pasture

the cattle are harvested eventually as free range grass fed beef

they are gradually expanding their veggie gardens
i was interested in how they did their rows
3 ft rounded beds
3 lines of drippers with drip holes every 12 inches
mulched heavily between the beds which were only 1 ft apart

this row of green beans had the darkest greenish leaves ive ever seen on a green bean vine
it made my green beans vines look so faded looking

they use compost and or compost tea on their beds

to control their rodent population they
use owl houses full of owls
provide habitat for hawks
so they have some control of the gophers and rats and mice

 i must say i was awestruck touring this farm

the last stop was climbing up the hill to the top named for alan the guy in the movie who was the brains behind all this
he later died from cancer

we were asked to stop under the shade of the trees with a nice breeze blowing over the hill
we were asked to stop and be quiet for a minute to listen to all the sounds and look out over the farm

of course my brain was on overdrive as i thought of all the things i could do in my small 400 sq ft garden and our community garden

i would suggest if you like a good feel good story and or interested in growing food the right way that you try to see this movie at a local theater if it comes to yours or get the dvd online at this link
apricot lane farms

the organicgreen doctor

Monday, September 23, 2019

organicgreendoctor: santa barbara country n news-i feel like a proud p...

organicgreendoctor: santa barbara country n news-i feel like a proud p...: SANTA BARBARA COUNTRY N NEWS-I FEEL LIKE A PROUD PARENT that picture above is a label we made for some wine we made once at a make your ow...

santa barbara country n news-i feel like a proud parent


that picture above is a label we made for some wine we made once at a make your own wine place
we always felt like that was a picture of the infamous larry the rooster who showed great joy in attacking my wife she when she wasnt looking

before it was planted

Image result for organicgreendoctor school garden
after it was planted

in 2014 my wife she came home and said we are going to do a school garden at our school
would you help me do my garden for my class
i did an approximately 3 ft x 4 ft raised bed from concrete cinder blocks
i did them eventually two layers high
in the bottom of the hole i put layers of cardboard to smother the invasive bermuda that was growing in the garden
i then brought in a load of the best organic garden soil that had compost minerals really rich healthy garden soil and filled up the bed
in the middle i added a circular bin that was made from chicken wire and was about 1 ft in diameter
this bin was used as a compost bin for the garden bin
it would feed the garden soil over time as the kids composted in it

around the garden i put a wide strip of black plastic covered with a thick layer of crushed granite to help keep the bermuda out of the garden bed

i remember a student helped me do the work
my guess he had some type of mental illness or was autistic
all i remember was he worked hard and seemed to really enjoy working in the garden
he never would look me in the eye and frequently talked to himself
he did smile some while he was working there

now i wasnt the brains behind this school garden
that was all the teachers and the students that thought all this up and did the work
i only contributed to the cause

this was about the time i helped one of the high schools where my wife she eventually ended up working until she retired to set up this 3,000 gallon rainwater tank so the rainwater could be used to water the new trees that were planted and the nearby native plants

i also not long before had put in my complete rainwater system that would eventually hold 30,000 gallons of water
i always felt like every school should collect rainwater off their buildings and should also have school gardens to plant veggies that they could eat and to make their own compost for the garden

i suggested to my wife she that we donate a rainwater tank to the school
one weekend i loaded up a 1500 gallon rainwater tank in my truck and hauled it to the school
i placed it in the location where it still sits
i chose that location as it was near a downspout and was strategically located so it could service the green house and the gardens

so one school day i hauled my 20 ft ladder to the school
climbed up to the top of the building
dropped 20 ft of 2in pvc down the 1 ft wide downspout
placed a 3in to 2in pvc reducer to act as the funnel for the new 2 in pvc downspout
the students held the ladder for me as i dropped the pipe down inside the bigger downspout
the students helped me connect the pvc downspout to the 1500 gal rainwater tank

i attached a water hose that could be used via gravity to water the beds or fill up watering cans

fast forward 5 years

the teachers and students obtained a grant to pay for a wind turbine to generate electricity which gets stored in a battery to provide electricity to a pump which is connected to the rainwater tank
when the water is turned on the pump can be used to pump water to the garden beds

just like when i did my wife shes garden and did the downspout the students did a lot of the work

i am sure they will always remember this project

here is the youtube video describing what they did

im a proud parent

the organicgreen doctor

Friday, September 20, 2019

organicgreendoctor: alzheimers news-that would make the treatment wors...

organicgreendoctor: alzheimers news-that would make the treatment wors...: ALZHEIMERS DISEASE-THAT WOULD MAKE THE TREATMENT WORSE THAN THE DISEASE MAYBE my mother and my younger brother took aricept (donepezil) fo...

alzheimers news-that would make the treatment worse than the disease maybe

Image result for organicgreendoctor
my mother and my younger brother took aricept (donepezil) for alzheimers disease
my older brother was on in for a year or two also
i have been on it now for almost 9 years

i am quite familiar with the side effects having experienced most of the side effects over the last several years

i read with interest this linked article on aricept (donepezil) causing rhabdomyolysis after working in the community garden with a large volunteer group for almost 4 hours in the hot sun last weekend
when i laid down for my afternoon nap i was awaken with a marked cramp in my calf and then on the opposite leg a severe cramp in my quadriceps
i was afraid at one point that i was not going to get the quad cramp to go away
i was left with a sore calf and a sore quadriceps

rhabdomyolysis is better known in the news from athletes who get overheated and cramp up
their muscle fibers get broken down and the substances have to be filtered by the kidney which can overwhelm the kidneys leading to acute kidney failure but thankfully most usually return to normal kidney functions after rehydration

some folks with this die or get left with permanent kidney damage

so thats why that article caught my attention after it showed up this week and after i had that get out of bed leg cramp that wouldnt hardly go away

i sort of suspected that someone on aricept (donepezil) would be susceptible to rhabdo as its called since folks like me get those godawful leg cramps at night sometimes
ive noticed them more often after ive done a lengthy garden session or a long hike

aricept (donepezil) allows acetylcholine to accumulate in the nerve endings so the nerve will fire and work better even in the brain if the nerve cell is partly damaged
thats how it works in the brain by making the brain cells work better

for some it works better than others
hopefully im one of them

this accumulation elsewhere in the body especially the gi tract like the intestine and stomach and the muscle leads to these side effects

you can watch my calves sometimes and they look like small snakes crawling under the skin as the muscle fibers fire beyond my control
its this overfiring of the muscle fibers that probably leads to the cramps and then the rhabdo

the gi symptoms are nausea vomiting diarrhea decreased appetite and abdominal pain
i have some nausea let just say im never constipated now for 9 years and i have some abdominal pain in the morning after taking the aricept (donepezil)
i also commonly have a loss of appetite and normally dont get hunger pains
i could probably easily go without eating but know i have to eat to live

i compensate by eating small meals and snacks in the morning that help
i also take a pill for nausea sometimes and take the ppi pill like omeprazole to help

i tolerate all this since i feel like the aricept (donepezil) may be why im better right now as it delays my symptoms for awhile

when i hike or work in the garden i try to stay well hydrated
if i dont i notice the leg cramps are worse

yes i read this article with interest
i will now be more vigilant about staying hydrated with exercise and just generally well hydrated all the time

even with these gi symptoms and the leg cramps and now the slight risk of rhabdomyolysis from taking the aricept (donepezil) the treatment is not worse than the disease
the untreated disease leads to your death 100% of the time

whats a little side effects

also join and or donate to our team for the walk to end alzheimers or join an alzheimers walk in your area

alzheimers disease presentation
our walk to end alzheimers team organicgreendoctor will be walking in the walk here in santa barbara on saturday november 2 2019
here is the link to my team and the walk

the organicgreen doctor

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

organicgreendoctor: my story revisited 21-the start of a new study

organicgreendoctor: my story revisited 21-the start of a new study: MY STORY REVISITED 21-THE START OF A NEW STUDY when i was diagnosed i was rejected by the adni study mentioned below since i couldnt quali...

my story revisited 21-the start of a new study

Image result for organicgreendoctor
when i was diagnosed i was rejected by the adni study mentioned below since i couldnt qualify to be in the normal control group of that study
i was started on aricept (donepezil) for my diagnosis and was told if after 3 months i was stable on the medication that i could reapply to be in the mild cognitive impariment wing of the adni study

as it turns out the adni study is the most important alzheimers study thats ever been done
most of the studies you know see reported in the news has some basis from the data obtained from the adni study
including the biogen aducanumab study

as i read studies i realize that they are talking about my results
my dna my rna my genetics my mir scan my blood proteins my amyvid pet scans my memory testing my spinal tap results
there were only around 1000 of us in the adni1 and the adni 2 studies
there were onlly 10 of us at the ut southwestern medical center alzheimers center
when i see those results i know that i am part of the beginnigs of a lot of alzheimers study

for me
just doing this study has fulfilled my desire to contribute to the advancement of alzheimers research
i feel like i am complete now

plus i did the biogen aducanumab study after this one for almost 3 years and am looking for another treatment study when i qualify probably in march of 2020

the adni study is just diagnostic testing only
i couldnt get any of my results on any of the testing
i duplicate a lot of it in the private world
spinal fluid analysis genetic testing mri scan
the memory testing i could score as i did the exam so i could tell if i was off on the scoring
the amyvid scan i was not able to duplicate but i did get the result when i entered the biogen aducanumab study in 2016/2017
yes it was positive

so the blog below was written 3 months after i was diagnosed
my life had changed during that time period
i had been on the aricept (donepezil) for 3 months and had adjusted to the side effects
the only ones that really affected me was the leg cramps and the sleep disturbances that interferred with my sleep
thats my biggest issue i have even today is the lack of sleep at night
ive learned to live with it
without the meds i might not be doing as well as i am now
although i cant be sure if thats why but i feel like its part of the answer

in the blog below i mentioned the amyloid pet scan called the amyvid scan
at that time it was only available in research studies
now its readily available and frequently used by private neurologists to diagnosis dementia patients

as many of you who read this blog know i was diagnosed with
early mild cognitive impairment amnesic type when i enrolled in a
research study at the university of texas at southwestern medical
center in dallas

during the initial evaluation it was discovered that i had some short
term memory loss not noted by other people but looking back i
had noticed some problems
no one my wife she, patients, my nurse d, friends, fellow doctors,
clinic employees or family noted any problems

i was to be in the normal control group but after my diagnosis of mci
i was started on aricept because of the changes and my family
history of alzheimers and was not accepted in that study

now that i have been on my medication for 2 months and am on a
stable dose i have the opportunity to start on a new study

the new study is called the alzheimers disease neuroimaging
initiative-2 (adni-2) and is sponsored by a grant from the national
institute on aging
i will be one of 10 persons in this national study from this institution
i will be in one of four groups being studied
the group i will be in is the early mild cognitive impairment group
the other groups are cognitive normal (where i was going to be
when all this started), late mild cognitive impairment, and
alzheimers disease

i will be followed for 54 months and will have serial neuro-
psychological exams(thats what caught mine), blood work to
include dna analysis to see if i have the genetic gene for
alzheimers(apoe gene with apoe 4 being the sucky gene),
spinal taps to check for amyloid protein levels(theory is thats what
is deposited in the brain that causes all this @#&*) and tau protein
levels (a protein that becomes unraveled in the brain),
mris, two different pet scans that shows amyloid deposits and one
that shows labeled sugars(fdg) utilized in the brain.
as the disease progresses the scans gradually become more abnormal
the pet scans that are used are only available in research studies

my progress will be monitored with these tests over this
period of time and any progression will be easily detected
the problem is some of the testing will not be available to me
to review
i will do extra spinal fluid analysis myself and the dna analysis
separately as those results i will not be able to see from the
research study

the neuropsychological exam results will be generally be reported
as the same, worse, or better

the scans may be partially reviewable

at the end of the 54 months i will know if i have progressed and
whether or not i have alzheimers or will develop alzheimers

at my death a brain autopsy will be done to compare the changes
that have occurred in the brain with the results seen on the scans

why do this study
although much of what is done is not reviewable by me i will still be
able to have my progress monitored and will generally know where i
am with this disease
i want to feel like i am contributing to the research for the cure and
treatment of this devastating disease that will affect everyone who
reads this blog in some way and may be the disease that breaks
the bank on our health care system

i will blog as i go along with this study which starts in april

what i didnt mention in the above blog was that i was also in a texas based alzheimers study during this time where i was seen once a year at the alzheimers center and had memory testing done and a neurological exam by a staff neurologists
i did that study for 7 years until i moved to california
those exams and memory results i did get to review later

in fact at one of my office visit they laid out all my moca tests for memory for me to see the scoring and thats when i realized how low my scores had dropped after my diagnosis was made then over time they rose to normal levels
i hadnt realized that my scores had gone that low

i found out later that at my lowest score times that my wife she and the research coordinator had sat in her office and both cried

anything as part of the adni 2 study i did not get to see the results

the organicgreen doctor