Published: Sun, September 23, 2018
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CDC: Alzheimer's disease, dementia cases to double by 2060

CDC: Alzheimer's disease, dementia cases to double by 2060

Governments have an obligation to support the 50 million people now living with dementia, and their families, which, again, is projected to increase exponentially to 152 million by 2050. That's about 1.6 percent of the population.

It projects the burden of Alzheimer's disease will grow to almost 14 million people, or roughly 3 percent of the population in 2060.

Alzheimer's disease is already crippling the minds of some 5.7 million Americans, and we have long expected a dramatic rise in its prevalence as the population ages.

The CDC projects that the number of white Americans with Alzheimer's disease will actually peak around 2050, then decline slightly to 7.06 million in 2060.

As the aging population of the United States grows, a new study from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that from 2014 to 2060, there will be a 178 percent increase in the number of Americans who have Alzheimer's disease and related dementias. Researchers estimate there will be 3.2 million Hispanics and 2.2 million African Americans with ADRD by 2060. The walk is non-competitive and family-friendly and participants can learn about Alzheimer's disease, advocacy opportunities, clinical studies enrollment and support programs and services from the Alzheimer's Association.

The CDC team used Census and Medicare data to make the projections.

The devastating neurodegenerative disease is the sixth leading cause of death in the USA, and caring for the surviving sufferers costs hundreds of billions of dollars. There are not even good treatments yet, although labs are working to develop something that can stop the progression of the brain disease.

'Every three seconds someone in the world develops dementia - we don't have a second to lose when it comes to getting it right for all people living with dementia and their families. Speaking and keeping up with a conversation may also become hard. Lowering blood pressure is proven to lower the risk considerably, and exercise appears to help at least delay symptoms.

"It is important for people who think their daily lives are impacted by memory loss to discuss these concerns with a health care provider", said Kevin Matthews, a CDC health geographer who led the study team.

The authors also highlight that, due to projected growth, caregivers of those living with dementia will need support and that "culturally competent care for these groups will be of paramount importance".

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