“When author Terry Pratchett was diagnosed with dementia, he was shocked to discover doctors could do little to help. For despite the fact that the condition affects more than 700,000 Britons (a million by 2025), research into its causes and treatment has been chronically under-funded. Patients and their families also have to cope with the stigma and ignorance surrounding dementia, as a report published today by the Alzheimer’s Society has revealed. In the belief that the only way to change this is to talk openly about the disease, here Terry Pratchett describes his own experiences.
Seven hundred thousand people who have dementia in this country are not heard. I’m fortunate; I can be heard. Regrettably, it’s amazing how people listen if you stand up in public and give away $1million for research into the disease, as I have done. Why did I do it? I regarded finding I had a form of Alzheimer’s as an insult and decided to do my best to marshal any kind of forces I could against this wretched disease.
I have posterior cortical atrophy or PCA. They say, rather ingenuously, that if you have Alzheimer’s it’s the best form of Alzheimer’s to have. This is a moot point, but what it does do, while gradually robbing you of memory, visual acuity and other things you didn’t know you had until you miss them, is leave you more or less as fluent and coherent as you always have been.”
(via The Daily Mail)