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Report links race to Alzheimer's

The 2010 report of the US Alzheimer's Association has found African-Americans and Hispanics are more likely to develop Alzheimer's disease

The 2010 report of the US Alzheimer's Association has found African-Americans and Hispanics are more likely than whites to develop Alzheimer's disease.

The latest report, 2010 Alzheimer's Disease Facts and Figures, includes a special review on race, ethnicity and Alzheimer's disease. A key finding this year is that older African-Americans are about twice as likely to have Alzheimer's than older whites, and older Hispanics are about 1.5 times more likely than whites, to develop the disease.

Although there appears to be no known genetic factor for these differences, the report examines the impact of health conditions like high blood pressure and diabetes, which are more prevalent in the older people in African-American and Hispanic communities. These conditions are known to increase the risk of Alzheimer's.

Further, the report states that lower levels of education and other socio-economic characteristics associated with increased risk of Alzheimer's and other dementias are more common in older African-Americans and Hispanics than in older whites.

Another interesting aspect explored is the fact that although African-Americans and Hispanics have a higher rate of Alzheimer's and dementia, they are less likely than whites to have early diagnosis. The report examines the implications of later diagnosis on families and healthcare costs.

The report also covers data on the prevalence, mortality, costs of Alzheimer's care and care giving, with a state-by-state breakdown of the situation in each US state.

Access the report from the Alzheimer's Association

9th March 2010

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