Lifewatch: Ibuprofen and Alzheimer's Disease

Reported by Claire Hosmann - bio|email
Posted by Debra Worley - email

(WECT) - A new study shows that those who take Ibuprofen on a regular basis may be less likely to develop Alzheimer's disease.

While the findings are not concrete enough for doctors to advise patients to take a daily dose, the results are getting a lot of attention.

"Ah, we have three ages," said Enio Fernando-Navarro.  "The one that you have. The one that you look like and the one that you think you are."

72-year-old Enio believes you are as young as you feel, because he is battling high blood pressure, diabetes, and Alzheimer's Disease.

For the past four years he has been getting treatments to slow down his memory loss.

"There's the theory that Alzheimer's has inflation in the brain the anti inflammatory drugs may be helpful," said Amanda Smith of the University of South Florida.

While some believe drugs like Ibuprofen may delay symptoms, Smith says the results may be providing us with more questions than answers.

"People that enrolled in the study they were 75 years old and above, and as they were followed the people that have the heaviest non steroidal anti-inflammatory use had 66 times higher rates of Alzheimer's disease," said Smith.

Some think the anti inflammatory drugs delay the onset of Alzheimer's until after age 75, but others wonder if the higher dosed drugs made things worse.

"Even with years and years of research there really isn't a strait answer as whether it is helpful or not," said Smith.

Another thought is Ibuprofen may benefit younger adults, but after you reach a certain age it no longer helps, but more testing is needed to prove this.