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Statistics on Alzheimer's Disease (AD)

Alzheimer's disease statistics: Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a progressive, degenerative disease of the brain, and the most common form of dementia. Here are some things you should know about Alzheimer's disease:

  • Approximately four million Americans have AD. In a 1993 national survey, 19 million Americans said they had a family member with AD, and 37 million said they know someone with AD.
  • 14 million Americans will have AD by the middle of the next century unless a cure or prevention is found.
  • One in ten persons over 65 and nearly half of those over 85 have AD. A small percentage of people as young as their 30s and 40s get the disease.
  • A person with AD will live an average of eight years and as many as 20 years or more from the onset of symptoms.
  • U.S. society spends at least $100 billion a year on AD. Neither Medicare nor most private health insurance covers the long term care most patients need.
  • More than seven of ten people with Alzheimer's Disease live at home. Family and friends provide almost 75 percent of the home care. The remainder is "paid" care, costing an average of $12,500 per year. Families pay almost all of that out-of-pocket.
  • Half of all nursing home residents suffer from AD or a related disorder. The average cost for nursing home care is $42,000 per year, but can exceed $70,000 per year in some areas of the country.
  • The average lifetime cost per patient is $174,000.
  • Alzheimer's Disease is the third most expensive disease in the United States, after heart disease and cancer.
  • The federal government estimates spending approximately $349.2 million for Alzheimer's Disease research in 1998. This represents $1 for every $287 the disease now costs society. The federal investment in heart disease, cancer and AIDS is four to seven times higher.
  • The Alzheimer's Association is the only national voluntary health organization dedicated to researching the causes, treatments, cures and preventions of Alzheimer's Disease and to providing education and support services to people with AD, their families and caregivers.

For further information on statistics, you may contact the Benjamin B. Green-Field Library of the Alzheimer's Association at (312) 335-9602.

For further information about Alzheimer's Disease or related disorders, contact the Alzheimer's Association at:

Alzheimer's Association of the Great Plains, 402-420-2540 or 1-800-487-2585 (Helpline)
Midlands Chapter , 402-502-4301or 1-800-272-3900 (Helpline)

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