Number of Alzheimer's patients to triple by 2050

Number of Alzheimer's patients to triple by 2050

The number of people with Alzheimer's disease is set to triple within the next 40 years, according to new research.

In a study published in the latest edition of the Neurology journal, scientists from the Rush Institute in Chicago have analysed data from the 2010 US census and the Health and Aging project.

However, their investigations have been impeded by the fact many cases of Alzheimer's and dementia go undiagnosed, so the team says it has been "resourceful", but believes it has emerged with inaccurate predictions.

Professor Jennifer Weuve, who led the research, revealed the number of patients with Alzheimer's in the US is expected to increase threefold to 13.8 million by 2050.

Although the study did not investigate the UK population, the Alzheimer's Society states there are 800,000 Brits who have been diagnosed with the condition. Many more are believed to live with it undiagnosed. If rates triple as expected, almost 2.5 million people in the UK will have Alzheimer's by 2050.

"These are staggering numbers. The ramifications for society and family caregivers in particular are huge," Professor Weuve commented.

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