Still Alice and the Hidden Tolls of Early-Onset Alzheimer’s Disease

still_aliceIn Still Alice, Julianne Moore plays a college professor struggling with her diagnosis of a genetic form of early-onset Alzheimer’s disease. Moore has already won two awards, a Golden Globe and a SAG Award, and is now nominated for an Oscar for Best Actress in a Leading Role.

While her performance is clearly nothing short of noteworthy, the biggest takeaway from this film in the increase in awareness of Alzheimer’s disease, particularly early-onset. Still Alice has gained a reputation as an outlet for highlighting the “hidden tolls” and its “shockingly accurate” depiction of this neurodegenerative condition.

With this in mind, Penn Medicine’s Steven E. Arnold, MD, director of the Penn Memory Center, sat down with us to weigh in on the topic with his expert opinion.

Spoiler Alert: This video may contain spoilers for Still Alice.

The Penn Memory Center is a National Institute on Aging-designated Alzheimer’s Disease Center (ADC). Their team consists of board-certified, experienced physicians specializing in cognitive neurology, geriatric psychiatry, and geriatric medicine, and clinical professionals from disciplines including neuropsychology, psychometrics, nursing, psychotherapy, social work, and research management. They provide clinical care including evaluation, diagnosis, treatment, and research opportunities for patients experiencing symptoms related to Alzheimer’s disease and mild cognitive impairment and related disorders, as well as providing support and resources to caregivers and family members.

For more information on the Penn Memory Center, visit:

Find more facts on the hidden tolls of Alzheimer’s disease that are highlighted in Still Alice, in the related NY Daily News article here.


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