Dementia, Other Degenerative Brain Diseases Have Shorter Life Expectancy

Patients with degenerative brain diseases die about two years earlier compared with people who don't have the same conditions.
Patients with degenerative brain diseases die about two years earlier compared with people who don't have the same conditions.

HealthDay News — Patients with degenerative brain diseases die about 2 years earlier compared with people who don't have these conditions, according to report published online in JAMA Neurology.

Researchers compared survival rates between 461 individuals with certain degenerative brain diseases and 452 healthy people in the general population. The study participants with degenerative brain diseases were diagnosed between 1991 and 2010. Three hundred nine had Parkinson's disease; 55 had Parkinson's disease dementia; and 81 had dementia with Lewy bodies. In addition, 16 were diagnosed with multiple system atrophy with parkinsonism.

During the study period, 68.6 percent of the patients with degenerative brain diseases died, while 48.7 percent of individuals in the control group died in the same period. Patients with synucleinopathies died about two years earlier. Patients with multiple system atrophy with parkinsonism had the greatest risk of death during the study period, followed by those with dementia with Lewy bodies, Parkinson's disease dementia, and Parkinson's disease.

"Our findings contribute important new evidence about the natural history and survival of people affected by synucleinopathies of various types," the authors write. "Our results may be helpful to guide clinicians counseling patients and caregivers."

Reference

Savica R, Grossardt BR, Bower JH, et al. Survival and Causes of Death Among People With Clinically Diagnosed Synucleinopathies With Parkinsonism: A Population-Based Study [published online May 15, 2017. JAMA Neurol. doi: 10.1001/jamaneurol.2017.0603. 

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