Self-assessed poor health could be an indicator of dementia risk
Published 5 October 2011
People who rate their health as poor or fair are significantly more likely to develop dementia later in life according to a study published online in Neurology Wednesday 5 October.
The study asked 8,169 people aged 65 or older to rate their health and followed them for nearly seven years. During this time, 618 people developed dementia.
Alzheimer's Society comment:
'As this study shows once again, keeping in tip top health will not only have short term gain but could significantly reduce our risk of dementia. It is therefore important that people manage any medical conditions they have, maintain a healthy lifestyle and have regular check ups with their GP.
However, although we have established the link between poor health and dementia, we do not yet have the scientific know-how to say for certain who will go on to develop dementia. More research is needed to increase our understanding of the brain and to develop new diagnostic tools. If this is to happen, we must invest in dementia research now.'
Dr Anne Corbett
Research Reference: 'Self-rated health and risk of incident dementia' by Montlahuc et al in Neurology online.