NZ man starts to reverse his wife's Alzheimer's

Must See 27/09/2018

A Waikato woman could be the first person in the world to improve from her Alzheimer's diagnosis.

Peter Dredge has been helping his wife Anne defy the condition and reverse her symptoms ever since she was diagnosed at age 60.

"She was a high-achiever, she was the person that could do anything," he says of his wife of more than 40 years.

"She organised everybody, everything. I was in awe of her ability."

Before her diagnosis, Mrs Dredge was a force to be reckoned with. But that force was taken away when Alzheimer's took hold.

Mr Dredge says everyone with the condition is told the same thing by their doctor.

"'You've got Alzheimer's, you're going to die, the only question is how quickly you're going to die'."

Ms Dredge deteriorated quickly, and last year was given just three months to live. But her husband refused to give up, and instead of planning a funeral, he planned for her recovery.

"We're not good at giving up," he told The Project's Jesse Mulligan.

The couple found a programme developed by US neurologist Dale Bredersen, whose research showed Alzheimer's could be treated.

"First you need to go after what's caused the symptoms, then you go after the causes," says Mr Dredge. "When you do that, you're breaking it down - and it's actually relatively simple to do."

First they started 'detoxing' Ms Dredge to deal with the toxins produced by her condition.

"We tackled diet, exercise - it was very broad."

The programme made a huge difference, he says.

"The moment we started detox, within 10 days you'd see a turnaround. She calms down, she starts to talk more often. She starts to recognise you," he said.

"The change is absolutely phenomenal. Today you look at her and she looks severely disabled, but if you compare that to where she was even a month ago, it is just completely different."

He says one doctor was particularly excited about his wife's progress.

"I just about fell off my chair when Anne was submitted to hospital and this physician said to her, 'This is where medicine's going'. My jaw dropped."

Mr Dredge says the reversal of his wife's symptoms is nothing short of miraculous.

"She was end stage. She'd been absolutely plummeting. I think she must be one of the first in the world that's done it."

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