The latest Table of Contents for the journal Dementia is now available online.
This issue features an Irish study investigating the impact of dementia on length of stay and the associated cost of care in acute hospitals.
Research published today (Friday 21 August) in The Lancet Neurology journal indicates that the number of people with dementia in some Western European countries is stabilising.
The reason(s) why rates of dementia may be levelling-off, or even falling, is not certain; but improvements in general wellbeing and ongoing work towards the reduction of risk factors for dementia (which include diabetes, cardiovascular disease, stroke, hypertension, depression, low educational attainment, smoking, obesity and physical inactivity) have been suggested.
According to the researchers, although the decrease in dementia occurrence is a positive sign, dementia care will remain a crucial challenge for many years because of population ageing.
Reference: Wu, Y-T. Fratiglioni, L. Matthews, FE. [et al] (2015). Dementia in western Europe: epidemiological evidence and implications for policy making. Lancet Neurology. Published online August 20th 2015.
Related: Dementia levels ‘are stabilising’. BBC Health News, August 21st 2015.
This parliamentary briefing outlines Government, NHS and other statutory bodies’ work to improve dementia diagnosis, care and support and research. It also includes statistics, tables and maps on age-adjusted dementia prevalence across the UK.
Dementia July 2015 vol. 14 no. 4 418-435
Self-management programs are effective for people living with chronic illnesses. However, there has been little research addressing self-management for people with dementia in the early stages. This study presents a qualitative evaluation of the experiences of attending a novel self-management program and initial process evaluation.
The program was designed with and for people with dementia. It addresses: (a) relationship with family, (b) maintenance of an active lifestyle, (c) psychological well-being, (d) techniques to cope with memory changes and (e) information about dementia.
Six participants with early stage dementia completed the intervention that was co-delivered by lay and clinical professional tutors. Participants and tutors attended focus group and interviews at the end of the program to explore their perceptions of the intervention. These were audio-recorded, transcribed verbatim and analysed thematically. Participants reported enjoyment and benefits from the intervention. This was despite some reporting concerns relating to their memory difficulties.
The program’s flexible nature, focus on strengths and the opportunity to spend time with other people living with dementia were particularly well received. Participants and tutors outlined areas for further improvement. The program was feasible and its flexible delivery appeared to facilitate participant benefit. Emphasis should be placed on maintaining activity and relationships, improving positive well-being and social interaction during the program. Memory of the pleasant experience and strengths focus was evidenced, which may impact positively on quality of life.
The results highlight the usefulness and acceptability of self-management for people with early stage dementia and provide initial support for the program’s structure and content.
Massive rise in health lost to dementia, finds global study
The number of people losing a healthy life due to dementia has almost doubled across the globe in one generation, reveals a report in The Lancet (Monday, 8 June). The latest Global Burden of Disease Study found a 92 per cent increase in dementia-related early death and years lived with disability between 1990 and 2013.
Link to full article: http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(15)60692-4/abstract
Trial begins to investigate diabetes drug’s potential for Alzheimer’s disease
It has been reported today that a drug commonly used to treat type 2 diabetes is to be tested in a clinical trial for Alzheimer’s disease. The drug, liraglutide, is to be evaluated in a phase 2 trial of people in the early stages of Alzheimer’s at centres across the UK.
New potential cause for Alzheimer’s: Arginine deprivation caused by overconsumption by immune cells
A new study suggests that in Alzheimer’s disease, certain immune cells in the brain abnormally consume an important nutrient: arginine. Blocking this process with a small-molecule drug prevented the characteristic brain plaques and memory loss in a mouse model of the disease. Published in the Journal of Neuroscience, the research not only points to a new potential cause of Alzheimer’s but also may eventually lead to a new treatment strategy.