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Differences in Clinical Aspects of Dementia in Various Ethnic Groups

  [ 48 votes ]   [ Discuss This Article ]
By Press Release • • March 2, 2000

WASHINGTON, Feb. 25 /U.S. Newswire/ -- Alzheimer's disease and
other types of dementia represent a significant medical disorder
that is increasing among numbers in the elderly. There are,
however, conflicting data that suggest that African-American
patients have higher rates of dementia than their white

In the January issue of the Journal of the National Medical
Association (JNMA), Rita Hargrove et al examined the difference in
dementia in African- American, Hispanic, and white patients. The
researchers studied and evaluated 1,573 patients at the Northern
California Alzhiemer's Disease Centers. All patients and
caregivers underwent structured diagnostic interviews to determine
demographic factors and symptoms of dementia.

Hargrove et al found there are indeed ethnic differences among
blacks/Hispanics and whites in functional impairment in AD and
mixed dementia. Although, there was no difference in severity of
functional impairment among black and Hispanics, there was a
difference in functional impairment in whites with AD and mixed

The investigators suggest that future cross-cultural studies of
dementia be explored to determine whether ethnic group differences
are based on the interaction of cultural differences; effects of
age, education, psychosocial variables and biological differences
during the course of dementia.

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