Study: Dementia tops cancer, heart disease in treatment cost
Cancer and heart disease are bigger killers, but Alzheimer’s is the most expensive malady in the U.S., costing families and society $157 billion to $215 billion a year, according to a new study that looked at this in unprecedented detail.
The biggest cost of Alzheimer’s and other types of dementia isn’t drugs or other medical treatments, but the care that’s needed just to get mentally impaired people through daily life, the nonprofit RAND Corp.’s study found.
It also gives what experts say is the most reliable estimate for how many Americans have dementia — around 4.1 million. That’s less than the widely cited 5.2 million estimate from the Alzheimer’s Association, which comes from a study that included people with less severe impairment.
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