Getty ImagesSINGAPORE– The world might not be prepared for an impending wave of dementia and the additional cases that Covid-19 might bring, according to a group representing over 100 Alzheimers and dementia associations globally.The Alzheimers Disease International is urging the World Health Organization and federal governments around the world to “urgently fast track research study on the prospective impact of COVID-19 on increasing dementia rates. Alzheimers illness is the most common type of dementia, and there is currently no treatment for dementia.In the brief term, “dementia rates might drop briefly as an outcome of the high number of deaths of people with dementia due to COVID-19, with between 25 to 45 percent of all COVID-19 deaths estimated to be of those with dementia,” the London-based group said in a media release Wednesday.But over the longer term, the number of individuals with dementia “might rise substantially due to the neurological impact of COVID-19,” it added.Since the coronavirus first emerged in China in late 2019, more than 217 million cases of Covid-19 have been reported– and over 18 million were detected in the last 28 days, according to official data assembled by Johns Hopkins University. That includes signs such as loss of taste and odor, “brain fog” or a loss of mental clearness, as well as problems with memory, thinking and concentration, he added.Atri, whos director of Banner Sun Health Research Institute in the U.S., discussed that Covid can damage and thicken micro vessels in the brain, harmed the bodys resistance and cause inflammation.That can offer “much easier access to things that can hurt your brain” and cause signs of neurological conditions– such as dementia– to show up earlier, the physician said.Wave of dementia casesThe World Health Organization estimated that around 50 million individuals have dementia globally, with almost 10 million new cases every year.Even before Covid-19, forecasts showed that dementia cases could increase from 55 million to 78 million by 2030, according to ADI.
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