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Early-onset Alzheimer's Strikes Families Fast and Ferociously (BBC)

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Early-onset Alzheimer’s disease, or young-onset Alzheimer’s disease, is an aggressive form of the disease that afflicts those under the age of 65. Accounting for less than 10% of cases, only last year was this form of the disease added to the Compassionate Allowance program list of medical conditions that always qualify for financial benefits. The timing of the disease catches couples when they’re trying to put kids through college or save for their own retirement. There is “no pension to fall back on. There’s no retirement fund. There is no saved-up money,” said Courtney Henley, whose father was diagnosed at age 36. “Young people with Alzheimer’s have a tremendously hard time getting a diagnosis,” said Lauren Tiede, early stages coordinator, New York City chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association. “It takes probably a second, third, fourth opinion.” That can delay Medicare benefits which kicks in a year after a person has been declared disabled.