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Indifference may increase the risk of dementia




Finding a way to treat indifference can be key to delaying neurodegeneration with age, according to a study published Wednesday by researchers at the University of California, San Francisco in Neurology, a medical journal of the American Neurology Society. ..

Dr. Meredith Bock, a clinical fellow at the University of California, San Francisco, said: Neurosciences Research Foundation, news release.

After adjusting for age, education, and other risk factors for dementia, Bock and her team conclude that people with severe indifference are 80% more likely to develop dementia than people with low levels of indifference. I attached it.

“Depression has been more extensively studied as a predictor of dementia, but our study has been added to studies showing that indifference is also noteworthy as an independent predictor of dementia.” Bock said. “In fact, indifference can be a very early sign of dementia and can be assessed with a simple questionnaire.”

Reasons for early treatment

In 2014, an estimated 5 million Americans over the age of 65 suffered from dementia. This figure is projected to nearly triple to 14 million by 2060. by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Further studies that identify indifference as a risk factor for dementia may help find the best way to target future early dementia interventions.

“We may be treating too late in the course of our illness,” Bock said.

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This may be because the results may indicate that indifference is characteristic of the early stages of dementia, the so-called prodromal stage, Bock said. At that stage, the person remains fully functional and the early effects of dementia, such as memory problems and confusion, cannot be detected by interviews or tests.

Determining which attributes or traits are associated with the actual diagnosis of dementia years later is a better understanding of the precursory stages of dementia with poor memory and early neurodegeneration. The key.

Bock and her team analyzed data from 2,018 adults from a cohort of health, aging, and body composition studies. This is called the Health ABC study, a positive cohort group of older whites and blacks living in the community.

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The average age of the group was 74 years, and each started the study without a diagnosis of dementia.

The study enrolled subjects aged 70-79 years (mean age 74 years) in Memphis, Tennessee and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania between May 1997 and June 1998. Caucasian subjects for the next 10 years. The researchers followed the reactions of these subjects three times over a 10-year period.

Just under 19% of participants had dementia by the end of the study. This includes 14% of the low indifference group, 19% of the moderate indifference group, and 25% of the severe indifference group.

Pandemic lessons

All data was collected long before this year’s pandemic, so participants’ lack of interest in going out is not due to blockades or fear of infection. However, the results provide insight into how pandemics may contribute to neurodegeneration.

“In my clinical experience with older people, all kinds of mood symptoms worsen during a pandemic,” she said.

Studies show that abdominal fat in older women is associated with a 39% increased risk of dementia within 15 years.

Bock, who has an elderly person who is particularly at risk of death from Covid-19 and is reluctant to go out or join a group, should not confuse his inability to go out or participate in regular activities with a lack of interest or desire. I explained. To do those things.

Even if older adults are socially distant or isolated, that does not mean that their actual motivation to go out and socialize when it is safe has diminished at all.

It complements other dementia studies

Joe Bergese, director of the Department of Geriatric Medicine at Albert Einstein Medical College, said: “There are some non-cognitive features that appear to have surfaced in the early stages of dementia.” Apathy seems to occur very early in the (illness) course. “

This study complements the work of Verghese and fellow researchers. Release The May Journals of Gerontology focused on older people with pre-existing neurological disorders such as mild cognitive impairment, stroke, and Parkinson’s disease.

Verghese found that indifference was associated with motor cognitive risk syndrome, predementia syndrome characterized by slow gait and cognitive complaints. The results suggested that designing a treatment plan focused on indifference may delay the onset of dementia.

These treatments may include involvement in more social activities, more exercise, behavioral interventions, and prescribing medications for professional indifference, Verghese said.

“The main goal of all these is to provide better care to the aging people,” says Bock.


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