Dementia afflicts over five million Americans. Although no cure exists, symptomatic treatments can provide temporary benefits and improve quality of life. Several medications that are effective in reducing symptoms and slowing decline are available, and other medicines and innovative non-pharmacologic treatments are in development. Healthy lifestyle habits have been shown to reduce risk and delay onset of symptoms. This presentation will review the latest information on the diagnosis and treatment of dementia and new treatment approaches in the pipeline. It will also highlight healthy behaviors shown to reduce symptoms, compensate for age-related cognitive decline, and protect brain health.
In 2010, 35.6 million people worldwide had dementia. This number is expected to nearly double in the next 20 years. In the community, the estimated prevalence of dementia in people age 85 and older is >30%. This program will rely on evidence based approaches for diagnosing and categorizing symptoms as well discuss both pharmacologic and non-pharmacologic treatments. Finally, this program will discuss ways to assist caregivers to provide optimal care and support for patients with dementia.