medwireNews: Research finds that diabetes patients develop dementia earlier than other people, but that they also die younger, so do not live with dementia for any greater time.
In line with previous research, the study found that 1286 Type 2 diabetes patients from the Fremantle Diabetes Study had a dementia incidence rate ratio of 1.28 relative to 5132 matched community controls, equating to an adjusted hazard ratio of 1.51.
However, as reported in Diabetologia, diabetes patients also had an increased mortality risk, and accounting for this competing risk reduced the hazard ratio for dementia to just 1.18, although it remained significant.
Overall, the diabetes patients developed dementia 1.7 years earlier than controls, but then also died an average of 2.3 years earlier, say David Bruce (University of Western Australia, Fremantle) and co-researchers.
The finding illustrates how “the competing event of death may obscure the potential risk of dementia had death been avoided”, they observe.
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