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Alzheimer Dis Assoc Disord. 2018 Jul-Sep;32(3):232-239. doi: 10.1097/WAD.0000000000000249.

Dementia Prevalence in Greece: The Hellenic Longitudinal Investigation of Aging and Diet (HELIAD).

Author information

1
Laboratory of Cognitive Neuroscience, School of Psychology, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Thessaloniki.
2
Department of Social Medicine, Psychiatry and Neurology, 1st Department of Neurology, Aeginition University Hospital, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens.
3
Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Harokopio University, Athens.
4
School of Medicine, University of Thessaly, Larissa.
5
Athens Association of Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders, Marousi, Greece.
6
Department of Neurology, the Gertrude H. Sergievsky Center, Taub Institute for Research in Alzheimer's Disease and the Aging Brain, Columbia University, New York, NY.

Abstract

INTRODUCTION:

Study of the epidemiology of dementia to gain insight into putative predisposing and prophylactic factors is the first step toward establishing effective preventive and therapeutic strategies for this ever-growing public health problem. Relevant data in Greece are scattered and outdated.

METHODS:

We investigated dementia prevalence as part of a population-representative epidemiological study [Hellenic Longitudinal Investigation of Aging and Diet (HELIAD)] in 2 Greek regions.

RESULTS:

Our sample comprised 1792 adults 65 years of age or older, who received a full neurological and neuropsychological evaluation that led to a consensus diagnosis. The overall prevalence of dementia was 5.0%, with 75.3% of the cases attributed to Alzheimer disease. Dementia odds were 15.8% higher for every year of advancing age and 9.4% lower for every additional year of education. Carrying at least 1 APOE-ε4 allele doubled the risk of dementia, whereas sex did not exert a statistically significant effect.

CONCLUSIONS:

Our results are consistent with previous research in Southern European countries; dementia prevalence in Greece is in the lower range of what has been reported globally.

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