Christopher M. Clark, MD; Jason H.T. Karlawish, MD
Grant Support: By National Institute on Aging (NIA) grants AG10124 and AG09215. Dr. Karlawish was funded by a Paul Beeson Fellowship and by NIA grants K01-AG00931 and P01-AG10124.
Corresponding Author: Christopher M. Clark, MD, Memory Disorders Clinic, Penn-Ralston Center, the University of Pennsylvania, 3615 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104.
Potential Financial Conflicts of Interest: Dr. Clark has been a paid participant in advisory board meetings for Janssen Pharmaceutica, Parke-Davis, Eisai, and Elan (formerly Athena Neurosciences). He has received honoraria from Parke-Davis, Eisai, and Pfizer for giving educational presentations on the diagnosis and treatment of Alzeheimer disease. Dr. Clark has also participated in research studies sponsored by Elan, Eisai, and Parke-Davis. Dr. Karlawish has received an educational grant from Ortho-McNeil.
Current Author Addresses: Drs. Clark and Karlawish: Memory Disorders Clinic, Penn-Ralston Center, University of Pennsylvania, 3615 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104.
Clark C., Karlawish J.; Alzheimer Disease: Current Concepts and Emerging Diagnostic and Therapeutic Strategies. Ann Intern Med. 2003;138:400-410. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-138-5-200303040-00010
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 2003;138(5):400-410.
Alzheimer disease ties with stroke as the third most common cause of death in the United States (2) and is a frequently articulated fear of the elderly. Both incidence and prevalence increase sharply with age (3, 4). When mild cases are included, Alzheimer disease may have a prevalence as high as 10.3% in noninstitutionalized white persons older than 65 years of age (5), and this figure is potentially even higher for black and Hispanic persons (6). In the United States, 1.9 to 4 million persons have Alzheimer disease (7, 8). With an average yearly cost of care of $35 287 per patient (9), this illness generates an annual cost to the U.S. economy of more than $141 billion (1997 dollars). Currently, 4.9 million persons in the United States are 85 years of age or older. Of these, 40% (1.8 million) may well meet clinical criteria for dementia. The steady increase in the number of persons living into the ninth and tenth decades of life multiplies the financial implications of this public health problem. The U.S. Census Bureau projects that 6.6 million persons will be in this oldest category 10 years from now. Unless there is meaningful progress to reduce the prevalence of Alzheimer disease, the number of persons in this age group who have dementia will double to 2.6 million.
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Print ISSN: 0003-4819 | Online ISSN: 1539-3704
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