Alzheimers to triple by 2050 as baby boomers age
CHICAGO (REUTERS) - The number of United States (US) residents aged 65 and older living with Alzheimer's disease is expected to nearly triple to 13.8 million by 2050 as aging baby boomers swell the ranks of those living with the brain-wasting disease, US researchers said on Wednesday.
The new estimates, published in the journal Neurology, confirm prior estimates and make clear the need for new and better treatments for Alzheimer's, the leading cause of dementia that now affects some 5 million Americans and 38 million people worldwide.
The latest US estimates paint a grim picture as more and more of the nation's baby boom generation pass the age of 65, putting them at higher risk for Alzheimer's, an age-related disorder that slowly robs its victims of the ability to think and care for themselves.
"Our study draws attention to an urgent need for more research, treatments and preventive strategies to reduce this epidemic," said study co-author Jennifer Weuve, an assistant professor of medicine at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago.