Alzheimer’s is a disease that most would only realize they have at a time least expected. Considering it is a life-altering illness, immediate diagnosis is a need. The only problem, until now, is that there was no clear way to do so. But a blood test may soon help address all these concerns.

Normally, the age-related disorder develops over many years. A reason behind this is the toxic changes in the brain that affects memory and thinking skills. The symptoms normally appear in people who are in their mid-60s. It gets worse over time, leading to a severe loss of mental function.

PET scans of the brain and lab tests of spinal fluid can reveal the disease-related changes. It is not reversible but early treatment may help preserve daily functioning for some time per NIH.

But there could be a game-changing solution to properly diagnose Alzheimer’s disease. This is through a blood test from C2N Diagnostics of St. Louis that is now available for sale. The test can help people learn if they have dementia, something experts believe is long overdue, the Associated Press reported.

It should be noted that the test is only intended for people aged 60 and above. It is priced at $1,250 and not covered by medical insurance or Medicare. Discounts are offered based on one’s income.

Only doctors can order the test and the results are known within 10 days. It’s sold in all but a few states in the U.S. and just was cleared for sale in Europe.

Accuracy on the diagnosis of these blood tests has yet to be officially published. However, doctors have published research on amyloid leading to the test.

According to chief executive Dr. Joel Braunstein, if a PET scan showed amyloid buildup, the blood test would show a high probability of that in 92% of cases and missed 8% of them.

If the scans returned negative, the blood test ruled out amyloid buildup 77% of the time. The other 23% got a positive result. However, that did not mean that the blood tests were incorrect.  The study suggests that the blood tests may detect amyloid buildup before it’s evident on scans.

Braunstein adds that they will seek FDA approval and the agency has given it a designation so that review can be fast-tracked. The study results will be published and he also defended the decision to start selling the test now.

Alzheimer's Vitamins B6, B12 and folic acid are key supplements to help slow down Alzheimer's. Creative Commons