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Tuesday 25th October 2016

Pre-dementia more common in men

26th January 2012

New research has shown that men may be at higher risk of the earliest signs of dementia.

However, it remains unclear why men avoid full-blown dementia, which is more common in women.

Research published in the journal Archives of Neurology said understanding the reasons behind the pattern could be crucial in beating dementia and may even reveal a way to halt it.

Dr Marie Janson of Alzheimer’s Research UK said: “These surprising results suggest that men may be at greater risk for MCI (mild cognitive impairment) despite having a lower risk for dementia, and it will be important to see whether further studies can replicate these findings.

“A key goal for research is to identify why some people with MCI develop dementia while others don't. If we can understand why some people have a greater risk for cognitive decline and dementia, we stand a better chance of being able to prevent the condition.

“With 820,000 people affected by dementia, and a rapidly ageing population, the need for research to find new ways to treat and prevent the condition has never been more urgent.”

The study saw Mayo Clinic researchers track the health of nearly 1,500 elderly men and women over a three-year period. During this time far more of the men developed mild cognitive impairment - 72 in every 1,000 compared to 57 per 1,000 women.

Professor Derek Hill, of University College London, said the study showed that MCI is a very complicated mix of factors and that different types of MCI arise and progress quite differently.


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