In this segment, Alzheimer’s disease and dementia expert Dr. Danielle Goldfarb talks about clinical trials. Dr. Goldfarb is a neurologist and psychiatrist, as well as a physician researcher at Banner Sun Health Research Center in Sun Sun City, Arizona. Clinical trials in an option for some patients, and it’s beneficial to participate. Dr. Goldfarb talks about what happens when you’re considering taking part to help determine whether a newly-developed drug is safe, well-tolerated and effective. Visit lift-ad.com for more about the LIFT-AD Phase 2 Study of an Investigational Drug for the Treatment of Mild to Moderate Alzheimer’s Disease. Sponsored by Athira Pharma.
View Episode Transcript
*The following is the output of transcribing from an audio recording. Although the transcription is largely accurate, in some cases it is incomplete or inaccurate due to inaudible passages or transcription errors.
The following podcast is provided by an approved senior care provider on the answers for elders radio network. And welcome everyone to answers for alders radio network podcast network. And we are very excited, on behalf of a thorough farmer, to be interviewing a wonderful top expert in Alzheimer’s disease, and that is Dr get Daniel Goldfarb out of Sun City, Arizona and be an organization called Banner Health, and thank you so much for being with us. Dr Golf Farm, thank you for having me. You know we’re I’m very excited to look to talk to you a lot about Alzheimer’s disease. There’s so many families that have been affected by it. They’ve my mom had dementia. She didn’t have Alzheimer’s, but she had to mention my stepmother had Alzheimer’s disease. It is touched so many families and the statistics on Alzheimer’s is just overwhelming and yet to meet someone like you. I was reading your bio and I would love to hear a little bit about you, know, share. Have you share with our listeners a little bit about your background? If you wouldn’t mind. Absolutely so. I’m a dual trained neurologist and psychiatrist and actually went into both fields knowing that I wanted to get into the world of Alzheimer’s disease, having having really my first exposure, not with my family members, but as a before medical school, I worked for a hospice dementia program that was just starting out in two thousand and five and working with people who are at end of life, dying of dementia various causes, and so wow, what I identified, and as many of us do, is there’s a I thought there was a lot of unnecessary suffering that was going on in this whole world and a lot of stigma, and so I that’s why I thought I need to do both of these residencies to get in a sense of the overlap of the brain and the mind and then the best equipped to work with people in families dealing with dementia. Wow, did you ever sleep? Doing two residencies? Did, and somehow I had a child too. So that, oh my goodness sakes, you’re amazing. So so, Dr Goldfarm, you obviously work with patients as well as on the research side in the memory center. How do you balance that and how? What is your interaction hit that? Yeah, so I’m a physician researcher at Banner Sun Health Research Institute and Sun City, and so I really see that anyone that comes into our clinic for an evaluation, for example in their families, one of the most one of the important parts of the care offered our research opportunities. So we have a number of clinical trials going on and so while we’ll, of course I will do the complete evaluation, will talk about treatments that are available, but also knowing that right now we, you know, in terms of medication, we only have symptomatic treatments, and so clinical trials in this world of Alzheimer’s are exploding. There’s so many promising things going on and being a part of clinical trials is really a there’s many benefits. HMM. And obviously, in and talking about trials, we’ve talked a lot with a thera farm about different types of trials and my question is to you is, if I’m a listener and I think about you know, I have a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease, but I don’t really know what I’m getting into with a trial or what they’re all about. Could you give me kind of an overview of what those are? Sure? What their light? Yeah, so being a part of a clinical trial it’s a personal commitment to learning about a medication that’s under investigation. So it hasn’t been approof, but the FDA needs to see certain steps take place to know if this drug is safe, well tolerated and if it’s effective to actually, for example, with Alzheimer’s, to to stabilize or improve cognition and also looking at other biologic factors. And so the way I approach it with my patients is that you know, first you know, let’s you know, let me tell you what you might be eligible for and then and every step is a conversation and making sure everyone knows what they’re getting into. And so all, you know, every medication that anyone takes had to have gone through clinical trials and of course we’ve heard a lot about these lately. So yeah, and before the clinical trials there was research, there was, you know, a lot of different types of testing going on. So it’s not like, you know, you’re just throwing your become a like, I use the term, you’re not a canary in the coal mine. There’s been a lot of foundation that has happened, but it’s there’s been some promise then that’s why it’s been to this point. Am I correct to absolutely. There are so many safeguards in place. Yes, and you’re actually, as a research participant and study partner, you’re getting so many medical you’re getting so many assessments that we sometimes identify things, other things earlier than would with your normal care. So sure, sure, and obviously with with these types of you know, powerful I use the word powerful because they are powerful discoveries. You know, I am very excited to kind of talk a little bit about those in our ex segment, but I really want to zero in on so once something, something hits a trial, there’s a great opportunity for some amazing things to happen if you get accepted, and obviously there’s a screening process. Is they’re not? There is someone to qualifies on there is and now, and obviously that depends on which study, you know, you’re participating in, what level that you are at with the disease, the progression, etc. All of those are factors, are they not? Yes, exactly. So we really want to make sure it’s the right patient, if you will, for the right study at the right time, and so we’re looking at, you know, blood labs, EKG, brain imaging, we’re doing some cognitive assessment to make sure that you’re in that correct right range of what we’re looking for depending on the study. So with the Menia it’s often you know, what stage of cognitive impairment do you have? Sure? Sure, and obviously with you know cognitive impairment that can affect the brain in different ways. It can it not? I’m I don’t know. I mean, I know enough about Alzheimer’s to be dangerous. So so, but I’m fascinated in so many things that I’ve learned through, you know, the research of a there a farm and you got you were definitely a big piece of that. So I’m very interested in how, you know, how I’ll do these discoveries happen, obviously, is through this amount of research that you guys do on a regular basis. Yeah, so, you know, memory, we hear we think I’ll often about memory when it comes to Alzheimer’s, but actually other things can be the first or predominant symptom, like language, visual, spatial, even mood changes sometimes are the first. We found out, you know, recently and so that’s why I’m encouraging. I encourage anyone, essentially he was over fifty, to really talk to your doctor, talked your primary care doctor. Don’t talk this up to this is just normal, because even if it’s not Alzheimer’s, it could, you know, there’s a lot of I call it, it’s good to get a tune up. You know, they’re got other things that could be adjusted. Yeah, I could be prestroke. It could be all kinds of things that I know that. You know, speech gets hard to process. Sometimes that’s the beginning of a stroke. It may not necessarily be something else on. You could have had mini strokes you don’t even know about it. So there’s a lot of different things. So when you go if you have a loved one that has a bait and you know has Alzheimer’s disease, what are are you think that they’re you know, about to you know you think that there may be something wrong. As a loved one, what do you think specifically, you should look for and and a potential like that. I think the most important thing is, is this a change for the specific person? Right? So, okay, so my wife has always been this great cook and she suddenly is having a hard time, not suddenly, but she has been having a hard time, like remembering the ingredients to these recipes. So that’s meaningful versus someone who doesn’t like to cook right or earn account right. Yet really they’re making mistakes with the bills, you know. So things like that are what is important to, you know, keep your radar up for, yeah, and obviously to notice those kinds of things. If somebody’s doing something the same way every day and all of a sudden they walk out in their pants are on backwards or something like that, that’s an indicator. Maybe not necessarily. It’s the it’s the decider, but it certainly it could mean, you know, you can’t, you don’t know how to tie your shoes anymore. You know, little things like that. Those are things, obviously, that to pay attention to. Is that absolutely and I would add that, you know, study show that when it comes to talking with your primary care doctor, if if a care partner of family member expresses to the doctor that they’re concerned, that doctor is more likely to take steps to work that up. So that’s why encourage caregivers to really advocate for their family members. Absolutely, and you know, being a being a caregiver. It’s it’s I always say, it’s kind of a delicate balance, because you still want to stay the daughter or the son or the sister or the husband or the wife or something like that, but on the other hand, there’s sometimes when you have to be the advocate and you have to be, you know, the person that’s saying you know, and how do you most delicately deal with that situation? I know when I was taking care of my mom, I would always just write a note to the doctor and hand it at the front desk when we check in, and so I never had to speak during the appointment and that all. I allowed her her dignity of having, you know, the conversation with the doctor, and yet I was able to get that dialog come forward and I think those are things if we just be a little bit more mindful of being a caregiver with you and being a team with the doctor as much as the the patient is is that correct? I mean, yes, absolutely. It’s such an art and you know, that’s another reason why I was drawn to this area is that, yeah, not just a disease, it affects the person and the family, the roles, their identity, the relationships, and so that has such implications, you know, in many ways. And so being I found that being knowing, knowing about the person who’s affected, who they’ve been over their life and using that and so they recognize you’re honoring them and you’re seeing them and you’re not just stigmatizing this. Right, right, and that’s the thing it’s like. It’s like absolutely, you know, maintaining that dignity. And we’re in our next segment we’re going to be talking about specifically about a brand new clinical trial that a theory of farm it is sponsoring. And for those of you that are really interested in our next segment, we’re just going to give you a website to go to so that you can follow along, if you want to look at it first before Dr Gofarm and I talk, and that is www dot lift. That’s L ift AD. So it’s L IFTCOM and if you go there will explain a lot of the clinical trial that we’re going to be talking about in our next segment. and Dr Gofarm and I will be back right after this. We at answers for elders. Thank you for listening. Did you know that you can discover hundreds of podcasts in our library on senior care. So visit our website and discover our decision guys. That will help you also navigate decision making. Find us at answers for elders. Doctor.
No post found!
Originally published January 23, 2022