Increased blood flow to the brain helps people with Alzheimer’s
It has been found by researchers that Nilvadipine, which doctors use as a drug to treat hypertension can aid to people who have Alzheimer’s disease by increasing the flow of blood to the brain. Alzheimer’s disease is a form of dementia, which progressively causes degeneration, and death of brain cells. Those who have dementia have problems making judgements and doing everyday tasks. Millions of people worldwide are affected by dementia. In the year 2017 almost 50, million what’s the number of people with dementia according to Alzheimer’s Disease International. It is said that this number will almost double every 20 years.
Nilvadipine’s effect on cerebral blood flow
Being a calcium channel blocker, which causes vascular relaxation and lowers blood pressure, Nilvadipine is used by people to treat high blood pressure. A recent study was conducted where 44 participants who had mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease were administered Nilvadipine to check whether it could slow down the progress of the disorder. The researchers at random gave Nilvadipine or a placebo to the participants and continued this treatment for six months. The blood flow was then measured to certain areas of the brain using an MRI technique at the beginning of the study and at the end of it.
The results showed that there was an increase in blood flow by 20% to the hippocampus in the patients who took Nilvadipine when compared to the placebo group. This is the area of brain which is linked to memory and learning. No other effects to the blood flow to other regions of the brain were seen.
Making way for more research
A lot of researchers feel that this technique needs to be explored in a much bigger and extensive way, which could be the next step for this study.