A research study published in The Lancet Public Health earlier this month suggests a marked increase in the projection of the number of patients who will be living with dementia in the UK by 2040. In fact, it suggests a 40% increase as compared to previous projections. This study projects that dementia sufferers will reach as much as 1.7 million by that time, as compared to previous estimates of 1.2 million. This is double the incidence of dementia that exists today. This increase is in stark contrast with previous studies through 2010 which suggested a decline in the incidence of dementia in more affluent countries. This trend began reversing after 2008. While the incidence rate of dementia decreased by 28.8% between 2002 and 2008, there was a 25.2% increase between 2008 and 2016. The study also highlighted the increasing disparity in the incidence of dementia based on educational level. Moreover, those with lower educational levels had a less significant decrease in the rate through 2008 and a more rapid increase after 2008. This will put a greater burden on caregivers of those with lower educational levels who traditionally had fewer resources. But it will also dramatically impact both the healthcare systems and society as a whole.
These striking trends of increased numbers of dementia patients most certainly could be found in both affluent and less affluent countries. With the release of new therapies for dementia, including the anti-amyloid agents, it is more important than ever to diagnose cognitive decline as early as possible. The earlier the diagnosis is made, the better the clinical outcome is likely to be. BeCare Neuro Link can help you screen for cognitive impairment or other neurologic diseases and can help you track your cognition if you do receive the diagnosis. Despite the increasing numbers of patients with dementia, the reason for hope is better than ever.