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

Wednesday, June 2, 2021

my story revisited #89-scans and more scans


when i wrote this blog in 2013 i was three years into the adni 2 or alzheimers disease neuroimaging initiative study 2
in this 5 year study they did serial memory testing and mris and spinal taps and pet scans for glucose metabolism and amyloid pet scans for amyloid accumulation
by following several thousands of folks with varying stages of memory loss they could document the changes that occurred over that time period

one of the tests done was an mri of the brain
like in those with memory loss who are undergoing an evaluation the mri looks for changes in the brain that might explain memory loss like brain shrinkage strokes masses blood vessel abnormalities tumors increased brain fluid aneurysm etc
one thing the researchers are looking for is wmh or white matter hyperintensities
little white spots on the mri 
these can occur in folks with high blood pressure and diabetes and high cholesterol and obesity
if these numbers are increased they are associated with an increased risk for developing dementia or stroke or alzheimers

i have lost count of how many mris of the brain that i have had
if i have them and i happened to get the report like i did with my last one last month i look for their description of these wmh or white matter hyperintensities
over the last 10 years it appears mine has not changed which is a good thing for me

that may be because i have got good control of my blood pressure and cholesterol and my weight

in the adni 2 study i had 2 glucose metabolism pet scans and they were both normal
thats also good since as the disease progresses these scans become abnormal

i also had 2 amyvid pet scans in the adni 2 study but i never got the results
i had 2 amyvid pet scans in the biogen aducanumab study 
i did get the result of the first scan but not the second one
the first was abnormal

i am scheduled for an amyvid pet scan next week for the biogen aducanumab study 
oh how i would like to know the results of that one
i received at least 7 monthly infusions of aducanumab before the study was done
the aducanumab removes amyloid from the brain

i will have at least 1-2 more of the amyvid pet scans in this study

when i wrote this blog 8 years ago i was about to undergo my second spinal tap 
if i am remembering things correctly this sample was also sent to a private lab to measure the amyloid and tau in my spinal fluid
this was positive for amyloid and tau
that is compatible with alzheimers disease

this spinal fluid results and my amyvid pet scan results tells me i have alzheimers disease

here is my blog on my scans from 2013

friday i went to dallas and had 
a mri scan of the brain as part of the adni study that im in 
typical mri scan 
louder than hell 
be still for over an hour
stuck up in that cylinder 
keep your eyes open for the next 7 minutes
you ever tried that before without blinking
sorry i blinked couldnt help it
why dont you try it and see if you can do it

i looked at my old mri scan report
and oops there were some white matter hyperintensities (wmh)
areas on my scan
i had forgot about those
since the scan more has been written about these
they are found commonly in elderly patients 
but im not elderly
if you have an increased number of these they can be associated with 
an increased risk for developing dementia alzheimers and stroke 
are found in patients with high blood pressure obesity diabetics high cholesterol

this is why its important to keep these things under good tight control 
over a life time

i only have one or two which are not significant
hopefully all im doing to control things with my health 
living right eating right exercising controlling my cholesterol and blood pressure
and maintaining a normal weight will keep those wmh where they are now

then i had a glucose metabolism pet scan of the brain 
i got an iv infusion of labelled glucose 
when i got home that night my wife she said you sure taste sweet 
when she kissed me

in alzheimers patients since they cant use the glucose in the damaged 
brain cells there is no uptake of the labelled glucose
and it will show up as blank areas on the scan 

my last glucose metabolism pet scan of brain was normal

a spinal tap for beta amyloid and tau protein
an amyvid pet scan of the brain for beta amyloid

next monday june 7th the fda will vote on approval or not of the biogen aducanumab infusion to slow down alzheimers disease in early alzheimers patients

hopefully the new york times article where i was interviewed about the aducanumab will be published before the fda votes
when it is published i will post a link to the article
hopefully they included the pictures of my garden in the article

the organicgreen doctor 

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