Isabel West

Date of Award


First Advisor

David Myers

Second Advisor

Jesse Robbins


This thesis explores the pathology and success of treatment varieties for two neurodegenerative diseases: Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. For each, the incidence and predictive impact on future generations are briefly addressed to emphasize the relevance of studying these two diseases currently worldwide. On a smaller scale, this thesis will report on ageism in the United States and how the average income makes it difficult for working adults to financially support their parents in poor health and old age. These factors will help the reader understand the importance of the included studies on neurodegenerative disease treatment options. These options will be addressed following an examination of the diseases’ causes and how these conditions are associated with cognitive damage. This section will consider genetic dispositional factors as well as other biological risk factors. Afterwards, it will address some of the standard ways healthcare professionals treat the symptoms of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease and what disadvantages they present. Finally, it will introduce some alternative methods of treating these diseases and why they have the potential to reduce risk of onset or mitigate some of the downfalls of orthodox practice.

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