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Bei älteren Erwachsenen vermindert ein leichter- bis mittlerer regelmäßiger Alkoholkonsum das Risiko des intellektuellen Verfalls (Dementia)

 

Alcohol “lowers dementia risk” in the elderly
 



 

LONDON

By Nick Lamb

Drinking light-to-moderate amounts of alcohol appears to protect against dementia in older adults, recent US research suggests.

Photo Matthew Munro - Health Media Ltd


Alcohol linked to lower dementia risk

 

In a study of more than 700 elderly people, researchers found that, compared with abstainers, consumption of one to six alcoholic drinks per week was associated with a significantly lower risk of incident dementia.

Although previous studies have shown that moderate alcohol consumption is associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease in the elderly, studies of alcohol consumption and dementia have shown conflicting results.

Dr Kenneth Mukamal, from the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, and colleagues conducted a case-control study of alcohol consumption and risk of incident dementia in the Cardiovascular Health Study, a prospective, population-based study of adults aged 65 and older in the US.

Dementia patients were identified through a series of neurological and neuropsychiatric screening tests between 1992 and 1999. Follow-up examinations were conducted each year.

The team compared self-reported alcohol use among 373 patients with incident dementia and a similar number of age-matched controls. Weekly alcohol consumption was categorised as none, less than one drink, one to six drinks, seven to 13 drinks and 14 or more drinks.

Reporting in the Journal of the American Medical Association, the team found that abstainers were twice as likely to develop dementia as individuals who consumed between one and six drinks per week.

The researchers also found that the link between alcohol use and dementia was affected by gender and possession of the apolipoprotein E-e4 (APOE-e4) allele.

Subjects who carried the APOE-e4 allele and who consumed more than six drinks per week had a substantially higher risk of dementia.

For women, the risk of dementia was lower among those who consumed seven or more drinks per week. By contrast, men had a “U-shaped” relationship between alcohol use and odds of dementia.

Dr Mukamal’s team advises, however, that women should not exceed the recommended daily intake of one alcoholic drink per day.

The researchers note that their study group represented a healthy group of older adults and thus their findings may not be applicable to the general population.

“However, our results are consistent with the hypothesis that light-to-moderate drinking has a protective effect on long-term cognitive function,” they conclude.

Reference: Mukamal et al, Journal of the American Medical Association 2003;289:1405-1413

© HMG Worldwide 2003  http://www.health-news.co.uk/

 

 

 

 

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