Okay, this isn’t a pure Connecticut story, but since Alzheimer’s disease affects over 155,000 state residents, I thought I’d give it a quick mention here in the blog . . .
I was cruising around the web the other day, and I came across this story from the Daily Mail (a U.K. publication) — it caught my eye because I’m a fan of author Terry Pratchett (Sir Terry to his royal fans), who has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.
Essentially, it boils down to this: Pratchett has been wearing this prototype anti-dementia helmet for 10 minutes a day, every day, for three months. As a result of this treatment, Pratchett has allegedly seen a “small improvement.”
The theory behind it is that it “directs intense bursts of infrared light into the brain to stimulate the growth of brain cells.”
Obviously, it’s going to have to go through a battery of clinical trials and other tests first, but if it turns out to work, it’d be a great breakthrough for such a terribly crippling disease.
I just like the idea because it’s outside of mainstream medical research. Of course, some would argue it’s too far outside, in the gray usually associated with snake oil and quackery, but hey, at one point Joseph Lister was scoffed at for his work sanitizing medical instruments and operating rooms to prevent infections.
I’m not saying the helmet is the cure everyone is looking for, or even works for that matter, but I’m not automatically dismissing it, either. What’s the harm in trying a few things outside the established conventions? Like the old Wayne Gretzky theory says, “One hundred percent of the shots you don’t take, don’t go in.”