Head CT > Degenerative > Alzheimer's Disease > Epidemiology

Alzheimer's Disease - Epidemiology

Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive, neurodegenerative disease that affects >65% of patients with known dementia. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, one in ten persons over the age of 65 and nearly half of those over age 85 have Alzheimer’s disease. Currently, Alzheimer's disease affects 4 million Americans and 30 million individuals worldwide with a female-to-male prevalence of 70%. Within fifty years the number affected in the U.S. alone is projected to increase to 14 million. This population costs the U.S. economy on average $100 billion per year in health care expenditures, and $26 billion per year in lost wages. An individual with Alzheimer's disease may live an average of 8 years to as many as 20 years from the initial onset of symptoms. Current treatment includes the use of acetylcholine esterase inhibitors and most recently a N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor antagonist. However, in many cases Alzheimer's disease leads to total disability with ensuing death secondary to infection, malnutrition, or body system failure.

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