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More women suffer from Alzheimer’s and shoulder caregiving

| | May 30, 2017

Women make up nearly two-thirds of the more than 5 million Americans with Alzheimer’s disease. A woman in her 60’s is now about twice as likely to develop Alzheimer’s as breast cancer during her lifetime…[Women also] shoulder the majority of caregiving for those with dementia. In fact, two and a half times as many women as men reported living full time with a person with dementia.

The link between differences in sex biology and Alzheimer’s is complex, and likely a product of the interplay between the aging of systems responsible for hormone delivery in the body, hormonal changes over time, and genetic risk for the disease. For example, both human and animal studies suggest that aging-related declines in estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, and other hormones leave brain cells vulnerable to toxic threats, including those from Alzheimer’s.

Only recently has the disproportionate impact of Alzheimer’s and other dementias on women been acknowledged and highlighted. Now we must dig deeper into how the relationship between genetic, hormonal, and lifestyle factors affect the brain over time. Through these efforts, there is an opportunity to better understand the causes and drivers of Alzheimer’s, and which of them are unique to each sex.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original post: Gender gap in Alzheimer’s disease rates, caregiving needs more attention

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Click the link above to read the full, original article.
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