“Gender gap in Alzheimer’s disease rates, caregiving needs more attention,” by Roberta Diaz Brinton, STAT

“Women make up nearly two-thirds of the more than 5 million Americans2 with Alzheimer’s disease. A woman in her 60s is now about twice as likely to develop Alzheimer’s as breast cancer during her lifetime. And as described in a Viewpoint article3 published this week in JAMA Neurology, women shoulder the majority of caregiving for those with dementia. In fact, two and a half times2 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 studies4 suggest that aging-related declines in estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, and other hormones leave brain cells vulnerable to toxic threats, including those from Alzheimer’s.”

LTC Comment (from Stephen A. Moses, President, Center for Long-Term Care Reform):
Eye-opening facts for women approaching the primary retirement planning years.

Gender gap in Alzheimer’s disease rates, caregiving needs more attention