Man, 24, who inherited deadly dementia gene says not knowing left him suicidal

A 24-year-old who is likely to develop a deadly form of dementia in his forties has revealed how not knowing whether he had the mutated gene that caused the disease made him want to ‘take his own life’. 

Jordan Adams, from Redditch, stars in new Channel 4 show The Restaurant that Makes Mistakes which sees 14 people with dementia running a pop-up eatery. 

Appearing on This Morning today, he shared how he lost his mother, grandmother and auntie to Pick’s Disease and explained how he made the harrowing choice to find out whether he had it or not.  

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Jordan Adams, from Redditch, Worcestershire, inherited a gene mutation from his late mother Geraldine which means he will develop Pick's Disease, a form of dementia

Jordan Adams, from Redditch, Worcestershire, inherited a gene mutation from his late mother Geraldine which means he will develop Pick’s Disease, a form of dementia

The 24-year-old stars in new Channel 4 show The Restaurant that Makes Mistakes which sees 14 people with dementia running a pop-up eatery, led by top chef Josh Eggleton

The 24-year-old stars in new Channel 4 show The Restaurant that Makes Mistakes which sees 14 people with dementia running a pop-up eatery, led by top chef Josh Eggleton

Jordan pictured as a boy with his mother; Pick's Disease claimed the life of her, her mother and her sister and the gene mutation that causes it has been passed on to Jordan

Jordan pictured as a boy with his mother; Pick’s Disease claimed the life of her, her mother and her sister and the gene mutation that causes it has been passed on to Jordan

Jordan explained to hosts Holly Willoughby and Philip Schofield that he always knew he had a 50 per cent chance of inheriting the gene from his mother Geraldine but had hoped to have his father Glen’s healthy gene.  

After taking the test and discovering that he will develop Pick’s Disease, Jordan says he now wants to have children with his partner Lucy – but will undergo pre-implantation genetic diagnosis to ensure they can conceive IVF babies without the gene being passed on. 

He explained: ‘I lived with the uncertainty [of not knowing] for so long that it took control of my life to a point where I was depressed, I was angry. I felt like I wanted to take my own life. It became a real problem.’ 

Chef Josh Eggleton told This Morning that starting a restaurant with 14 people who have dementia working there was a nerve-wracking experience

Chef Josh Eggleton told This Morning that starting a restaurant with 14 people who have dementia working there was a nerve-wracking experience

Jordan appeared alongside Josh, far right, and one of the volunteers at the restaurant Sue Strachan 'get out there and do something' after accepting she had the disease

Jordan appeared alongside Josh, far right, and one of the volunteers at the restaurant Sue Strachan

Sue, 63, explained that she was diagnosed with vascular dementia at the age of just 55 in December 2012 but says she has made the decision to 'get out there and do something' after accepting she has the disease

Sue, 63, explained that she was diagnosed with vascular dementia at the age of just 55 in December 2012 but says she has made the decision to ‘get out there and do something’ after accepting she has the disease

The pop-up eatery sees 14 dementia patients serving up top nosh - and some hilarious moments - as part of the new Channel 4 show

The pop-up eatery sees 14 dementia patients serving up top nosh – and some hilarious moments – as part of the new Channel 4 show

The volunteers pictured in the restaurants including Jordan, back row, far left

The volunteers pictured in the restaurants including Jordan, back row, far left

Sue Strachan worked behind the bar of the restaurant and says she hopes viewers will laugh with them

Sue Strachan worked behind the bar of the restaurant and says she hopes viewers will laugh with them

WHAT IS DEMENTIA? 

Dementia is an umbrella term used to describe a range of progressive neurological disorders, that is, conditions affecting the brain.

There are many different types of dementia, of which Alzheimer’s disease is the most common.

Some people may have a combination of types of dementia.

Regardless of which type is diagnosed, each person will experience their dementia in their own unique way.

Dementia is a global concern but it is most often seen in wealthier countries, where people are likely to live into very old age.

HOW MANY PEOPLE ARE AFFECTED?

The Alzheimer’s Society reports there are more than 850,000 people living with dementia in the UK today, of which more than 500,000 have Alzheimer’s.

It is estimated that the number of people living with dementia in the UK by 2025 will rise to over 1 million.

In the US, it’s estimated there are 5.5 million Alzheimer’s sufferers. A similar percentage rise is expected in the coming years.

As a person’s age increases, so does the risk of them developing dementia.

Rates of diagnosis are improving but many people with dementia are thought to still be undiagnosed.

IS THERE A CURE?

Currently there is no cure for dementia.

But new drugs can slow down its progression and the earlier it is spotted the more effective treatments are.

Source: Dementia UK 

He said he made the decision to have the test so he could ‘plan my life for the future.’

‘I want to continue to raise awareness but I’ve got my partner Lucy, who I’m very serious about. We’ve very keen to have a family. 

‘Hopefully with pre-implantation genetic diagnosis we’ll be able to have babies through IVF without passing the gene on, which mean my kids don’t have to live with dementia, which is the whole reason for having the test.’

Jordan is one of 14 volunteers who worked in the Restaurant That Makes Mistakes for five weeks in Bristol for the new television series.   

He was joined on the This Morning sofa by top Michelin-starred chef Josh Eggleton and another volunteer Sue Strachan. 

Sue, 63, explained how, in December 2012, at the age of 55,  she had a sudden transient global amnesia – essentially short-term memory loss – and was diagnosed with vascular dementia.  

She told Holly and Phil she spent ’18 months thinking they’d got it wrong’ before accepting she had the disease and deciding to ‘get out there and do something’. 

Chef Josh Eggleton said he’d been nervous about the venture but had learned a lot, saying: ‘I felt like I was part of that team. It was incredibly nerve-wracking on the first day.’

The trio said some ‘hilarious things happened’ during the filming of the show but that viewers will hopefully ‘laugh with us’. 

The Restaurant that Makes Mistakes airs on Channel 4 on Wednesday at 9pm 

 

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