Alzheimer’s: TV report on Lecanemab and Transcranial Pulse Stimulation (TPS)

RTL reports on the new beacons of hope Leqembi and TPS in Alzheimer’s therapy

In recent decades, the search for effective treatments for Alzheimer’s disease, one of the most devastating and widespread forms of dementia, has been characterized by setbacks and stagnation. But recent breakthroughs are now signaling a turning point, giving new hope to millions of sufferers and their families worldwide

On Monday, March 4, 2024, the TV channel RTL reported on the two greatest beacons of hope for sufferers – shockwave therapy Transcranial Pulse Stimulation (TPS) and the infusion drug Lecanemab.

With the development of these innovative treatment methods, there is a ray of hope on the horizon. However, Lecanemab (trade name: Leqembi) has not yet been approved in Europe and is still viewed with caution by experts due to the sometimes massive side effects, the organizational effort involved and the high costs.

Transcranial Pulse Stimulation (TPS), on the other hand, is carried out with the NEUROLITH shockwave system, which was approved in 2018 for the treatment of the central nervous system in Alzheimer’s dementia, and is already being used successfully in clinics and practices alongside intensive research into other indications such as Parkinson’s, depression and others. The costs of TPS therapy are much lower than those of the new infusion preparation.

Lecanemab aims to halt the progression of Alzheimer’s disease

As can be seen in the RTL TV report, the first individual positive experience reports have been received in the USA, where Leqembi is already being used. The antibody is not intended to treat the symptoms, but to halt the progression of the disease, but costs the equivalent of 24,000 euros per patient per year and long-term experience is still pending. A decision on the drug’s approval in Europe is due to be made at the end of March 2024.

Lecanemab and TPS: University Hospital Bonn researches both therapies

“It is not a cure, but it is an immensely important advance for the future,” says Prof. Klaus Fliessbach, neurologist at Bonn University Hospital, in an interview. It is now necessary to find out for whom the therapy, which is administered by infusion every two weeks, is suitable, especially as the active ingredient is only suitable for patients in the early Alzheimer’s stage.

An important advance, but the side effects are a major problem

In addition, there are clear risks: “Excessive reactions in the vascular walls have been observed as side effects, resulting in small oedemas in the brain and sometimes also small bleedings. So if you use it on a lot of people, it can also lead to really bad side effects and even death,” says Prof. Fließbach. So it’s a case of wait and see and weighing up the benefits.

Transcranial Pulse Stimulation (TPS) – already well researched and without relevant side effects

Prof. Ullrich Wüllner, Director of the Clinic for Neurodegenerative Diseases, is also conducting research into Transcranial Pulse Stimulation (TPS) shock wave therapy at Bonn University Hospital. Over 10,000 patients have now been treated with the procedure. Both in studies and in practice, there are no relevant side effects with TPS and the long-term observations extend over several years. The costs for TPS are also much lower: the 6-part treatment series of around 30 minutes each currently costs between € 2,000 and € 3,000, plus individual refresher treatments at individual intervals.

RTL lets one of Prof. Wüllner’s patients, who is being treated with TPS, have his say: “It really does make you feel new again,” says the 84-year-old patient about his therapy experience. His partner adds in the interview: “The word-finding difficulties are still there, but they have improved significantly. And he is also reading again.”

Whether preparations such as Lecanemab or non-invasive brain stimulation methods such as Transcranial Pulse Stimulation (TPS) could now bring the long-awaited breakthrough in the fight against Alzheimer’s is left open by the TV report, albeit still cautiously. But there is certainly hope for people to live longer and more self-determined lives, it concludes.

It is to be expected that Transcranial Pulse Stimulation (TPS) will soon be able to offer more than just hope thanks to the good, expanding study situation. An overview of the studies on TPS published to date can be found here:

Transcranial Pulse Stimulation (TPS) – Studies

The RTL report from March 4, 2024 can be seen here:


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