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The Centers For Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Draft Decision Could Limit Patient Access To New Technology That May Help In Diagnosing Dementia
Date:7/25/2013

use of new beta-amyloid imaging agents should help to reduce uncertainties in the diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease and related dementias, which is of importance for patients and their caregivers. Piramal Imaging is hopeful that CMS will moderate its position when it renders its final decision by finding less restrictive ways to gather the information it seeks regarding health outcomes. 

CMS is accepting public comments on its proposed decision from all stakeholder groups and is accepting public comments now through August 2, 2013. Comments can be posted at: http://www.cms.gov/medicare-coverage-database/indexes/nca-open-and-closed-index.aspx.

"We urge anyone concerned with Alzheimer's disease—patients, caregivers, healthcare professionals, patient advocacy groups and the general public—to share opinions on the value of beta-amyloid PET imaging during the initial 30-day public comment period," said Dr. Dinkelborg. "Every letter will have an impact on CMS' final decision in September."

About the value of beta-amyloid PET imaging
Today, Alzheimer's disease is usually diagnosed after a person with a cognitive impairment undergoes an extensive clinical examination which typically includes family and medical history, physical and neurological examinations, laboratory tests, and imaging procedures such as computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans. Still, a definitive diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease can only be made after death where an autopsy can reveal the presence of beta-amyloid plaques and neurofibrillary tangles in the brain. However, post-mortem studies looking for accumulations of beta-amyloid in the brain have shown that 10 to 30 percent of diagnoses based on clinical examinations are incorrect.

Beta-amyloid PET imaging holds the promise to detect beta-amyloid plaques in live patients. Bec
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SOURCE Piramal Imaging SA
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