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Dement Geriatr Cogn Disord. 2013;35(1-2):77-86. doi: 10.1159/000345984. Epub 2013 Jan 29.

Prevalence of dementia in elderly clients of a private health care plan: a study of the FIBRA-RJ, Brazil.

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Department of Epidemiology, Institute of Social Medicine, State University of Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.



To describe the overall prevalence of dementia syndrome and its major subtypes among elderly clients of a private health care plan and to ascertain the association between this syndrome and socioeconomic characteristics.


A survey was organized in two stages: screening for cognitive impairment and diagnostic evaluation. The study population comprised 683 elderly subjects (aged >67 years), an expanded sample of 7,486 individuals, of the database of the FIBRA-RJ, which evaluated clients of a private health care plan residing in northern districts of the municipality of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The diagnosis of dementia was obtained according to DSM-IV criteria.


A total of 115 individuals were diagnosed with dementia, resulting in a prevalence of 16.9% (95% CI = 14.4-19.8). The association was strongest among older age groups, i.e. 85-89 years old (prevalence ratio = 8.85; 95% CI = 2.11-37.11) and 90 or more years old (prevalence ratio = 8.85; 95% CI = 2.11-37.11), and among illiterate people (prevalence ratio = 2.77; 95% CI = 1.07-7.19). Sex, personal income and marital status displayed no association with dementia.


The prevalence of dementia was higher than found by population-based studies. These findings point to a possibility of a high demand for specialized services among older adults served by the private health care sector.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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