Memory loss associated with dementia, a condition of which Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form, affects individuals and their communities, alters the brain’s road map of a collective past and causes progressive challenges for the future. It is important to recognize the distinct pattern of early warning signs that are not a part of normal aging, but reflect a degenerative disease process that requires the attention of a medical professional. At the Toronto Memory Program, we are committed to assisting individuals with associated memory loss through consultation, diagnostic testing and treatment that may be critical for quality of life. We strive to advance patient health and independence through high quality care guided by the principles of integrity, client service excellence and respect. At the Toronto Memory Program we support important research by participating in international clinical trials that bring us closer to breakthrough discoveries in the development of new treatment options. Our state-of-the-art 13 000 square foot facility includes our Memory loss Clinic, centre for dementia research and research infusion centre. Our hope is that one day, Alzheimers disease will exist only as a memory.
The Memory loss Clinic is staffed by physicians dedicated to the field of dementia. They are committed to the long-term health and wellness of patients and caregivers. Individuals are referred by their physician for initial consultation and diagnosis. Conditions that are seen in the Memory Clinic related to memory loss include Age Associated Cognitive Decline, Subjective Cognitive Decline, Mild Cognitive Impairment, Alzheimer’s disease, Lewy Body dementia, frontotemporal dementia and vascular dementia. Investigation, treatment and ongoing care are tailored to the specific diagnosis.
From the moment you arrive at the Toronto Memory Program, you can expect to be treated with dignity and utmost courtesy throughout the journey of ongoing care for dementia. Education and counselling regarding the specific dementia definition, medication and non-pharmaceutical treatment options will be discussed with you, and we will provide recommendations to your referring medical practitioner in order to optimize continuing care.
Patients with a valid Ontario Health Card who visit us are eligible for complete OHIP coverage.
In addition to a thorough history and neurological examination the diagnostic assessment is aided by the use of a number of sophisticated memory tests done during the visit. This may be followed up with referral for investigations to rule out reversible causes of memory loss such as hypothyroidism or vitamin B12 deficiency. Referral for advanced radiological tests such as brain MRI and SPECT scan is often considered to rule out vascular dementia or stroke or to aid in the diagnosis of Alzheimers disease. The Memory Clinic is also a site for the advanced Cognigram computer test that is helpful for identifying early signs of dementia and decline.
You may qualify for drug therapy trials that could break new ground in treatment for a debilitating disease.
An official clinical trial site since 1996, the largest and most accomplished of its kind in the country, Toronto Memory Program has been a part of over 100 studies evaluating new medications to treat Alzheimer’s disease. Clinical trials in Alzheimer’s disease are conducted under stringent international guidelines for ethics and conduct and Toronto Memory Program has successfully met the highest standards of a Health Canada inspection.
Clinical trial participation is voluntary, free, and study medication is provided to you at no charge. Clinical trials in Alzheimer’s disease evaluate medications to slow down the disease or to help with symptoms. Currently approved Alzheimer’s disease treatments help with symptoms, but do not slow down the disease. If an individual is on a currently approved Alzheimer’s disease medication, they continue to take it throughout the trial. Education on all aspects of the clinical trial is provided in order to help individuals and caregivers decide if participation in a trial is the right choice for them. Participation does not require referral from a physician.
Through education, Toronto Memory Program continues to promote awareness in our community and to provide practical support to individuals and families dealing with memory loss. We offer elective and ongoing educational opportunities to medical professionals, undergraduate and medical students, caregivers and the general public.
Memory loss affects many; it can be an intensely challenging, frightening and stressful experience for the patient as well as the people who care about them.
It may help to know that at Toronto Memory Program we understand that a diagnosis related to memory loss may result in more questions than answers. We are here to provide assistance every step of the way. We offer communication therapy with a speech language pathologist, social work support, as well as safe driving programs and assessments for our patients.
Often, those in a caregiving role place the health and well-being of a friend or family member with memory loss before their own happiness and welfare. It is important to acknowledge that loving self-care is crucial to the ability to provide the best possible support to others while maintaining a healthy balance. It is common when caring for people with dementia to experience a wide array of difficult emotions, which may include feeling overwhelmed or helpless in the face of a mysterious and merciless disease. But there is help. At the Toronto Memory Program, we offer practical and compassionate support to those who stand by their loved ones when they may be at their most vulnerable. Stress management strategies are taught in our highly successful Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction for Caregivers program.
Through a long and often formidable journey, our professional team is dedicated to going the extra mile for individuals dealing with Alzheimers and memory loss. From thoughtful details such as portable entertainment systems for our infusion centre study subjects, to on-site services for visitors including a coffee shop and bistro on our main floor, we strive to make our patients and their families feel welcome in a professional yet warm and relaxed environment.
In the event that a medical transfer becomes recommended for our patients, a hospital emergency department is located within 2 kilometres of our convenient clinic location at Don Mills and York Mills Road.
It is important to us that our door is always open to all of our clients seeking high quality care. Toronto Memory Program offers accessible parking and wheelchair access.
From behavioural neurology to sports medicine, occupational therapy and pharmacology, our specialized team of physicians and clinical experts provide knowledgeable support and therapies to our valued clients and their families. Under the guidance of Dr. Sharon Cohen, a Canadian-trained behavioural and cognitive neurologist who is recognized internationally as an expert in her field, our dedicated staff is connected through a common commitment to providing the finest in medical care.
Contact us at 416-386-9761 and visit the Toronto Memory Program at 1 Valleybrook Drive, Suite 400, 15 minutes north from Toronto centre on the Don Valley Parkway. We are open Monday to Friday from 8am to 4pm to serve you, with complimentary accessible parking available on-site. Through earlier diagnosis, treatment and research, we provide support for individuals with memory loss, families and communities. Together we honour your life experience and stand strong in the possibility of a brighter future.