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Survival after dementia diagnosis in five racial/ethnic groups

Information on anticipated survival time after dementia diagnosis among racially/ethnically diverse patients is needed to plan for care and evaluate disparities. Dementia-free health care members aged ≥64 years were followed (1/1/2000-12/31/2013) for dementia diagnosis and subsequent survival (n = 23,032 Asian American; n = 18,778 African American; n = 21,000 Latino; n = 4543 American Indian/Alaska Native; n = 206,490 white). Kaplan-Meier curves were estimated for survival after dementia diagnosis by race/ethnicity. We contrasted mortality patterns among people with versus without dementia using Cox proportional hazards models. After dementia diagnosis (n = 59,494), whites had shortest median survival (3.1 years), followed by American Indian/Alaska Natives (3.4 years), African Americans (3.7 years), Latinos (4.1 years), and Asian Americans (4.4 years). Longer postdiagnosis survival among racial/ethnic minorities compared with whites persisted after adjustment for comorbidities. Racial/ethnic mortality inequalities among dementia patients mostly paralleled mortality inequalities among people without dementia. Survival after dementia diagnosis differs by race/ethnicity, with shortest survival among whites and longest among Asian Americans.

Authors: Mayeda ER; Glymour MM; Quesenberry CP; Johnson JK; Pérez-Stable EJ; Whitmer RA

Alzheimers Dement. 2017 Jul;13(7):761-769. Epub 2017-02-05.

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