Օn October 26, YSMU hosted an international conference titled “Let’s Help Armenia fight against Alzheimer’s Disease Problems”, aimed at helping to raise awareness of Alzheimer’s disease in Armenia. Today there are more than 50 million people with Alzheimer’s disease in the world. The disease emerges after the age of 60, mostly between 75 and 84 years. As Alzheimer’s disease is incurable, main treatment is the improvement of life quality of patients.
At the conference both Armenian and foreign specialists were present. YSMU Vice-Rector for Science Konstantin Yenkoyan greeted the participants of the conference, noting that the issue being raised is of great importance and such conferences have great value for the journey taken up by the specialists. Head of the Department of Biochemistry of YSMU, Professor Mikhail Aghajanov noted that cooperation with Alzheimer’s Disease Association has continued for many years: ““We are studying the mechanisms of disease development, trying to find methods of treatment and prevention, while they research how to deal with disease development and dissemination, how to help such patients, and how to improve their quality of life.”
Mikhail Aghajanov also indicated that people are often ashamed to discuss this illness, and the specialists plan various ways of detection of the illness. He urged to talk to specialists, as there is nothing shameful about that. The professor added that the main causes of the disease are alcohol abuse, micro biota of gastrointestinal tract, excess weight, severe head injury, as well as loneliness.
“If these problems are eliminated by 25%, 3 million people will not be ill with Alzheimer’s” – he added. In his report he also referred to understanding of Alzheimer’s. Professor Hovhannes Manvelyan, Head of the Department of Neurology of YSMU, presented a report on “The Problem of Dementia in Armenia”, and Jane L. Sahakyan, President of the “Alzheimer’s Disease Care in Armenia” organization, touched upon the topic of “Memory Loss: what is normal and what is not?”. Specialist of dementia treatment, Victor Mazmanyan, presented a report titled “Care and Hope”.
Mikael Narimanyan, the head of the Department of Family Medicine of YSMU, noted that the role of family physicians is great in the detection of the disease. “There is a need for real steps to enable family doctors to be more knowledgeable about this issue and to be able to identify the illness” - he said.
Apart from the professors, YSMU 3rd year student Artyom Aghabekyan also spoke about the biological bases of Alzheimer’s disease.
“The disease takes place is in stages: memory loss, mental return to childhood, loss of awareness, loss of ability to follow basic hygiene. Unfortunately, in most cases the psychological burden of the illness falls on the shoulders of their loved ones” – he comments.
At the end of the conference all the participants were awarded certificates.