There’s been quite a bit of discussion on the Dementia Advocacy and Support Network (DASN) message board about a sentence in the Alzheimer’s Association's generation alzheimer’s report:
Today, there are no Alzheimer survivors — none.
" As a person with early onset familial Alzheimer's/vascular dementia at the mild cognitive impairment stage, I am upset by the lead quote of your boomers report," she wrote. "These words of 'no survivors' are demoralizing to all of us with the disease - the very persons you are working for….There is nothing new in the Boomer Generation Report and it appears to be out there mostly to raise money for the Association….It would be helpful in future reports on our generation to highlight the many things that people my age (born 1947) who are boomers can do to improve their health and reduce their risks of Alzheimer's and related dementia."
If “survival” means “disease-free survival,” then technically the Alzheimer’s Association statement is correct. The idea that there are no survivors is connected to the view of Alzheimer’s as a terminal disease. But Alzheimer’s is now diagnosed at very early stages, and its course varies greatly. At least for some people, maybe Alzheimer’s should be considered more of a chronic condition, and maybe we should call them Alzheimer’s survivors.