According to a recent study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias (ADRD) will double by 2060 in the United States. The study, published online in Alzheimer’s & Dementia: The Journal of the Alzheimer’s Association, is the first to forecast Alzheimer’s estimates by race and ethnicity.
What is Alzheimer’s Disease?
Alzheimer’s, a progressive disease with no cure, is the most common cause of dementia. People with dementia experience memory and other cognitive ability loss. ADRD are serious enough to interfere with daily life because of the severe symptoms, including disorientation, mood and behavior changes, confusion about events, times and places, and unfortunately, unfounded suspicions about family, friends, and caregivers.
Who is at Risk for Alzheimer’s Disease?
As people age, their risk for developing Alzheimer’s and related dementias increases. Worldwide, 50 million people are living with Alzheimer’s and other dementias. In the United States, an estimated 5.7 million Americans of all ages are living with Alzheimer’s dementia. Among people ages 65 and older, African Americans have the highest prevalence of ADRD. In second place, Hispanics. Followed by non-Hispanic whites, American Indian and Alaska Natives, and lastly, Asian and Pacific Islanders.
CDC Researchers Predictions
By 2060, the researchers estimate there will be 3.2 million Hispanics and 2.2 million African Americans with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias. Researchers from the CDC predict that Hispanic Americans will have the “largest projected increase due to population growth over the projection period.” In other words, non-Hispanic whites will have the largest total number of Alzheimer’s cases in the United States. Researchers also predict that the “ADRD burden” will double to 3.3% by 2060 when 13.9 million Americans are projected to have the disease.
Conclusions of the Report
The report concluded that “as the U.S. population increases, the number of people affected by Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias will rise, especially among minority populations,” said CDC Director Robert R. Redfield, M.D. This is a result of fewer people dying from other chronic diseases and surviving into adulthood. Among people ages 65 and older, the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias increases. The report finally concludes the need to provide support for caregivers of persons living with ADRD and how early diagnosis and planning long-term services and support is key to planning for their healthcare needs.
For more information on CDC’s activities related to Alzheimer’s disease and the Healthy Brain Initiative, visit https://www.cdc.gov/aging/index.html and www.cdc.gov/aging/healthybrain. For more information on Alzheimer’s care, support and research, visit https://www.alz.org/alzheimer_s_dementia.