Race, Gender, Dementia May Affect Parkinson's
WEDNESDAY, Jan. 4 (HealthDay News) -- Men appear more likely to
die from Parkinson's disease than women, Hispanics and Asians with
the neurologic disorder, a large U.S. study reveals.
The researchers also found that those patients who suffered from
dementia had a higher death rate from Parkinson's disease.
The findings stem from an analysis of 138,000 Parkinson's
patients across the United States who were Medicare beneficiaries
between 2002 and 2008.
Led by Dr. Allison Willis from Washington University School of
Medicine in St. Louis, the study appears in the January issue of
Archives of Neurology.
During the six-year study period, overall, 64 percent of the
patients died. Nearly 70 percent had developed dementia in that
Black patients had the highest death rate, at more than 66
percent, while white patients had a slightly lower rate of almost
By contrast, Hispanic and Asian Parkinson patients faced death
rates of roughly 55 percent and 51 percent, respectively.
The team also found that those patients who had both dementia
and Parkinson's were less likely to survive. The incidence of
dementia was highest among black Parkinson's patients at more than
78 percent. Hispanics, whites, and Asians had dementia rates of
about 73 percent, 69 percent and 67 percent, respectively.
"We demonstrate that dementia occurs commonly in patients with incident [Parkinson's disease] 65 years and older; this had the strongest effect on age-adjusted survival among the variables that we studied," the authors said in a journal news release. "Our data highlight the need for prevention of, or treatment, for dementia in patients with PD because of its effect on survival."
For more on Parkinson's, visit the
U.S. National Library of Medicine.
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