FDA approves diagnostic agent that evaluates for Alzheimer's disease
The US Food and Drug Administration has approved a radioactive diagnostic agent that can be used to evaluate a patient for Alzheimer’s disease and other cognitive disorders. The injectable diagnostic agent, called Amyvid, binds to amyloid plaques, a hallmark characteristic of Alzheimer’s disease. Amyvid makes it possible to detect levels of amyloid plaques using a positron emission tomography (PET) scan. While Amyloid cannot provide a definitive diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease, it can be used along with other diagnostic evaluations. A negative Amyvid scan indicates sparse to no amyloid plaques are present, which is inconsistent with Alzheimer's Disease and reduces the likelihood that a patient's cognitive impairment is due to the disease. A positive Amyvid scan indicates moderate to frequent amyloid plaques are present, which is consistent with the disease, but may also be present in patients with other types of neurologic conditions and in older people with normal cognition.