Alzheimer's disease treatment
Alzheimer’s disease is a chronic, progressive neurodegenerative condition that afflicts
over 50 million patients worldwide including more than 5 million sufferers in the
United States, of whom only 2.2 million are being treated. The direct
healthcare costs exceed $200 billion driven by patients with moderate to severe Alzheimer's disease who require
care in nursing facilities and assisted living facilities. Caregiver burden is a second significant economic cost
of the disease with 15 million caregivers providing 17 billion hours of unpaid care to dementia patients per year,
valued at over $200 billion. The treated population is forecast to increase from the current 2.2 million to nearly
3.5 million by 20201.
The current standard of care for the treatment of moderate to severe dementia of the Alzheimer’s type is concurrent
treatment with memantine and donepezil. Between 2003 and 2011, it is estimated that 3.3 million patient years of
memantine exposure have been recorded in the US (IMS Health) alone, and that about 50% of US prescriptions of
memantine were written for patients who were also prescribed donepezil (IMS Health)2.
Despite the many drugs under development for Alzheimer’s disease, most scientists agree there is no cure on the horizon
for Alzheimer’s disease or for the other diseases that cause dementia. Progression of dementia leads to dependence on
caregivers and family, who struggle with managing activities of daily living, behavioral challenges, and complicated
dosing regimens of the multiple medications that most dementia patients require.
For information on MDX-8704 (memantine HCl ER/donepezil HCl, US market)
For information on ADS-8704 (memantine HCl ER/donepezil HCl, ex-US market)
- World Alzheimer’s Report 2009, Alzheimer’s Disease International; 2012 Alzheimer’
Disease Facts and Figures, Alzheimer’s Assoc.
- IMS Health, 2012
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