Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Charity beer festival helps dementia sufferers

Charity beer festival helps dementia sufferers

The Northern Echo: Event boosts funds(9469627) Event boosts funds(9469627)
A BEER festival held in Chester-le-Street raised almost £850 for a charity that helps people with dementia.

The Alzheimer’s Society County Durham’s fundraising volunteers staged a daytime beer tasting followed by an evening festival at Chester-le-Street Cricket Club’s clubhouse in Mains Park Road earlier this month.

The event, which followed a successful wine tasting held by the charity last year, featured beers made by smaller brewers in and around the North-East.

Charity volunteer Anthea Cordner said: “We decided we wanted to do a fundraising evening with a difference, and after the huge success of our wine tasting last summer, we thought this would be a great way to raise vital funds for the Alzheimer’s Society.

“It’s great that, as a group, we are building on the success of our past events to raise funds to help support people to live well with dementia and to fund research to one day find a cure for dementia.”
Alzheimer's Society’s Community Fundraiser Rebecca Scott, who organized the event, said: “It’s great that our County Durham volunteer group are giving their time to support Alzheimer’s Society.
“There are over 35,000 people living with dementia in the North-East but dementia is more than just memory loss; it robs people of their lives and has a devastating impact on families and loved ones.
“We rely on the generosity of supporters and volunteers like this group, to help us continue our vital work so that Alzheimer's Society can continue leading the fight against dementia.”

For more information about the charity’s work and its fund-raising efforts in County Durham call its area office in Chester-le-Street on 0191-389-0400.

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

What is Dementia with Lewy Bodies

From the Lewy Body Society

What is Dementia with Lewy Bodies

Dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB), also known as Lewy body disease, is the second most frequent cause of age-related neurodegenerative dementia.

At least 5 percent of people aged 85 and older are thought to suffer from this little known but not uncommon and devastating disease. In the UK approximately 100,000 are thought to suffer from DLB.

There are presently over 700,000 people with dementia in the UK and this number is projected to rise to 1,000,000 by 2021 unless cures are found.

There are currently about five million people with dementia in the European Union. These figures represent only patients; caregivers double or treble the number of people whose lives are directly affected by dementia and relations and friends increase these numbers further.

DLB shares mental symptoms, such as confusion and loss of memory, with Alzheimer's disease and motor symptoms, such as gait and slow movement, with Parkinson's disease. For that reason it is often misdiagnosed. Accurate diagnosis is essential for successful treatment of the disease: people with DLB are characteristically highly sensitive to certain drugs which can worsen unpleasant symptoms or even be fatal.

DLB was virtually unknown until a decade ago. Due in large part to a close collaboration between researchers in the UK, Japan and the USA, it is now recognised as a distinct medical condition and not a variant of Alzheimer's or Parkinson's diseases.

The Lewy Body Society was founded in 2006 in order to support research into DLB and to raise awareness and educate the public, the medical profession and those in health-care decision-making positions about the disease. The first LBS funded research began in 2007 with a PhD studentship at Newcastle University.

Monday, 18 August 2014

Awful night

I had another awful night, that's two in a row, just as I thought things were getting better after the new medication was stated last week.

I am amazed people do not have heart attacks during nights like this as they are so frightening.

However as I keep damaging my right arm when I walk into things, I am strapped up and has sterry strips on my wounds, to keep the skin flaps closed. On top of that I am on strong antibiotics, so this could be making my nights worse, as the night time medication and antibiotics could be making life much worse

Once I am off these antibiotics we will see what happens. 

I suppose this is all caused by the fact that my balance is on it's way out, and I cannot walk in a straight line anymore, and my eyes are rubbish, so I do not always tell how close things are until I hit them.

 My skin is very thin due to the constant use of steroids after all the chest infections I have been having, so when I walk into things the skin either blisters big time or the skin peels back which is quite frightening. 

This illness is cruel and I can now understand how people get depressed as part  of dementia, as this weekend was very nasty, a place I have never been before and it scared me to death. 

However I feel a lot better today and hope things start to pick up again. 

I am off to get my hip and knee  X-rays done this morning as they think I have osteoarthritis in one leg which could be making my balance worse and my foot sometimes drags and trips me up,  so it's going to be a long day. 
But I am hopeful that the rest of the day will be good.

Sunday, 17 August 2014

FA Chairman Greg Dyke commits to head injury research amid fears of dementia

Taken from todays Daily Mail

FA Chairman Greg Dyke commits to head injury research amid fears of dementia among former professional footballers

  • Greg Dyke commits to funding independent research into head injuries
  • Concerns are growing over the high incidence of dementia in former players
  • Dr Ian Beasley insists football will face a ‘tsunami’ of legal claims if concussion protocols are ignored

Dyke has met the family of former England striker Jeff Astle — who died in 2002 aged 59 from early on-set dementia which a coroner found was caused by heading footballs — and he apologised for the FA’s and PFA’s failure to deliver promised research while providing assurances more will be done to tackle the problem.

‘It was reassuring to hear Mr Dyke taking this issue so seriously,’ said Astle’s widow Laraine, who is leading the ‘Justice for Jeff’ campaign calling for stricter concussion measures. ‘He assured us more would be done in the future to understand the extent of this issue and protect future generations.’ 

‘We’re not even counting (head injuries) properly yet,’ admitted Beasley. ‘We want robust research that gives us some idea of what’s going on.

‘The FA should not run the research. We need to present ourselves to a big academic body and say “help us formulate some research which will give us some answers as to what happens on a football field”.     
In June, Professor Willie Stewart, a world-leading neuropathologist who accompanied Astle’s family to Wembley to meet Dyke last week, re-examined the former West Bromwich Albion striker’s brain and confirmed he died from chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) — a form of dementia caused by repeated head injuries and found in former boxers, american footballers and rugby players.

‘This is potentially a significant public health issue and needs to be treated as such,’ said Stewart. 

On Saturday, West Brom announced they will dedicate a home game to Astle in a bid to help raise awareness of head injuries in football while a picture of the club’s record scorer will be displayed on the big screen at the Hawthorns in the ninth minute of every home game this season.

While reassured by West Brom and the FA response, Astle’s family have been angered by a contradictory interview given by PFA chairman Gordon Taylor on Wednesday. In the talksport interview Taylor claimed an unpublished study from 2002 — which the FA insist was never completed — showed ‘no causal link’ between head injuries in football and dementia.

But while denying a link exists, Taylor added that professional footballers ‘know the risks’ and pointed to boxers continuing to box despite tragic cases.

Taylor’s comments were branded ‘irresponsible’ and ‘ill-informed’ by experts.
Sportsmail has also learned that Uruguay defender Alvaro Pereira, who was knocked unconscious against England during the World Cup but allowed to play on, has suffered complications from the injury and was last week knocked out again playing for his club Sao Paulo in Brazil.