At the University of Utah Center for Alzheimer's Care, Imaging and Research (CACIR), patients, caregivers and physicians will find the Intermountain West's most comprehensive treatment, research and education resource for Alzheimer's disease and dementia.
Established with generous support from an anonymous donor, the Center works to raise standards for dementia care by empowering patients, caregivers and physicians with the most current knowledge available. "The Center is designed to take advantage of the significant advances in dementia research and to get those advances into the community," explains Dr. Norman L. Foster, CACIR's Director.
Each patient who visits the Center's Cognitive Disorders Clinic is assessed by a health care team comprised of a neurologist, a neuropsychologist, a neuropsychology technician, a health educator and a social worker. Based on this assessment, the patient receives a definitive diagnosis and a personalized management plan.
Early diagnosis is key to improving Alzheimer's and dementia treatment. "We are most effective when we can see patients early and intervene early," says Dr. Foster. The Cognitive Disorders Clinic employs state-of-the-art diagnostic methods, including positron emission tomography (PET) imaging. Dr. Foster pioneered the use of PET imaging with fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG-PET), a technique that enables definitive early diagnosis of Alzheimer's. Because the University of Utah's cyclotron facility is one of only three in the United States to meet FDA Good Manufacturing Practice standards for producing radiotracers, the clinic is able to provide residents of the Intermountain West with the most advanced diagnostic and research imaging methods available.
- Conduct translational, patient-oriented, multidisciplinary clinical research that brings advances in fundamental and social sciences to the routine practice of dementia care.
- Deliver the latest brain imaging technologies to clinicians treating patients with dementia at the time and place where decisions are made regarding risk, diagnosis, treatment and follow-up.
- Form an alliance between patients and their families with dementia specialists and researchers permitting those who benefit to also contribute.
- Develop and model innovative care systems that link medical care with community resources to support patients with dementia and their families.
Site Last Updated: July 9, 2013