Navigation Links
Treatment with light benefits Alzheimer's patients, Wayne State University finds
Date:1/11/2012

Detroit - Exposure to light appears to have therapeutic effects on Alzheimer's disease patients, a Wayne State University researcher has found.

In a study published recently in the Western Journal of Nursing Research, LuAnn Nowak Etcher, Ph.D., assistant professor of nursing, reported that patients treated with blue-green light were perceived by their caregivers as having improved global functioning.

Caregivers said patients receiving the treatment seemed more awake and alert, were more verbally competent and showed improved recognition, recollection and motor coordination. They also said patients seemed to recapture their personalities and were more engaged with their environment. Patients' moods also were described as improved.

Etcher's work is inspired by her interest in a phenomenon known as "sundowning," when Alzheimer's patients sleep during the day, wake up later and may be up all night long. Part of her doctoral research was to utilize light, a common intervention for circadian disorders, to regulate the rest-activity patterns of women with Alzheimer's.

This study, Etcher said, was an effort to address disagreement among researchers on the effect of therapeutic light in regulating rest-activity patterns in Alzheimer's patients. The study involved 20 women older than age 65 with Alzheimer's dementia from nursing homes in southeast Michigan. Each patient was assigned randomly to an experimental group receiving blue-green light treatments or a control group receiving dim red light.

A commercially available visor used to treat seasonal affective disorder and jet lag was used to administer the light to patients. Caregivers patients' family members and nursing facility personnel were not told which type of light was hypothesized to have physiologic effects.

Although blue-green light recipients comprised the active experimental group, Etcher said she was surprised when some recipients of red light the placebo group also were reported as showing improvements, with caregivers saying their patients were calmer and had reduced resistance to care.

The level of effects varied, Etcher said, noting that while the blue-green group recipients were largely reported by caregivers as showing improvement, a few showed little to no effect from the treatments.

"Some of the rest-activity pattern disruptions that we see associated with Alzheimer's dementia may not necessarily be circadian based," Etcher said. "They may be due to unmet needs, pain or other phenomena, and therefore would not respond to an intervention aimed at regulation of the circadian system."

Calling her study preliminary, she said it now needs to be replicated with a larger sample and different demographics.

In addition to ascertaining which behaviors are circadian based, establishing which methods are most appropriate to analyze data like Etcher's requires exploration, she said. She is proposing further work that uses two different nonlinear analytic methods to examine sensitivity and specificity to detect change in circadian patterns, with a long-term goal of developing interventions to regulate those patterns to the benefit of patients' overall function.

"If they sleep better at night, and are more awake during the day, they can eat, they can interact with other people and they can take advantage of other cueing agents in the environment," she said. "In addition to light during daytime and darkness during the nighttime, smells at mealtimes, food intake, interactions all these things in conjunction help regulate our day."


'/>"/>
Contact: Julie O'Connor
julie.oconnor@wayne.edu
313-577-8845
Wayne State University - Office of the Vice President for Research
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Despite Treatment, Employees with Depression Generate Higher Absentee Costs, According to Thomson Reuters Study
2. Women More Likely to Fail Treatment for Atrial Fibrillation
3. Social Anxiety and Panic - Alternative Treatment to Drugs and Therapy
4. Neuroimaging study may pave way for effective Alzheimers treatments
5. Nanofilm Introduces Clarity Defog It™ Anti Fog Treatment and EcoClens™ Eco-Friendly Lens Cleaner at Vision Expo East
6. Many veterans not getting enough treatment for PTSD
7. Scott & White Memorial Hospital uses device to revolutionize treatment of traumatic aortic injury
8. Allegheny General Hospital Study Demonstrates Safety and Potential Efficacy of Oral Allergy Treatment
9. Charging less for more effective treatments could reduce health care costs while improving health
10. Added Drug Aids MS Treatment
11. PTSD Treatment Still Lacking for Veterans
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/28/2017)... york (PRWEB) , ... April 28, 2017 , ... ... to announce that Aditya Patel M.D. has joined the revolutionary endoscopic practice under ... and board certification in Interventional Pain Medicine. The patented, revolutionary eDiscSculpt Technique created ...
(Date:4/28/2017)... ... April 28, 2017 , ... Early detection and ... drug safety and minimize the cost of development. In this webinar, sponsored by ... cell lines and for cardiac toxicity using induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs). , ...
(Date:4/28/2017)... ... April 28, 2017 , ... Researchers at ... ActiGraph’s CentrePoint Data Hub in a sample of participants enrolled in ... activity and sleep monitoring solutions for the global scientific community. The company’s new ...
(Date:4/28/2017)... ... April 28, 2017 , ... NuevaCare, a leading home ... as Millbrae, Burlingame, and Palo Alto, is proud to announce information upgrades to its ... bookmark and read organized content on topics such as home care (generally) as well ...
(Date:4/27/2017)... ... April 27, 2017 , ... Today, ... based in Denver, Colorado, announced an agreement to create the Jane and Leonard ... of the Jane and Leonard Korman Family Foundation. The collaboration leverages the strengths ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:4/19/2017)... Medical Corporation (TSX: CRH) (NYSE MKT: CRHM) (the "Company"), announces that it ... 2017 at the Sheraton Hotel in Toronto, Ontario ... the Company is scheduled to present on Tuesday, May 2 at ... Chairman of the Board, Tony Holler will also attend ... For more details ...
(Date:4/19/2017)... , April 19, 2017 Global ... This report on the prostate cancer therapeutics market ... global market. Increasing prevalence of prostate cancer, launch ... in the development of new drugs & therapeutic ... cancer drug due to lesser side effects are ...
(Date:4/19/2017)... , April 19, 2017  New research provides evidence ... advanced Parkinson,s, according to a study released today that will ... Annual Meeting in Boston , April ... to the treatment of Parkinson,s disease, the oral drug levodopa ... life and longevity. But as the disease progresses, the effects ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: