Deaths from Alzheimer's disease in Scotland increase by 31% in one year

June 15, 2017, Alzheimer's Research UK
Credit: CC0 Public Domain

Deaths from dementia in Scotland have soared by 31 percent in a year, according to new statistics released by the National Records of Scotland today.

Provisional quarterly figures for deaths in the country show that 1,877 people died from Alzheimer's and other dementias in the first quarter of 2017 – with deaths from Alzheimer's disease up 30.9 percent from the same period one year ago, and deaths from dementia up 17.9 percent. This equates to a 22 percent rise for all forms of dementia.

Some of the recorded rise is due to a change in the way death records are coded for Scotland's official statistics, with dementia now recognised as the underlying cause of death in many cases that would previously have been attributed to chest infections or pneumonia. However, this only accounted for a 7.5 percent increase in deaths from dementia – not enough to explain the 22 percent rise seen overall. Official statistics last year showed that dementia was Scotland's second biggest cause of death, and the overall trend in recent years has shown the number of deaths from the condition increase.

Dr Matthew Norton, Director of Policy at Alzheimer's Research UK, the UK's leading dementia research charity, said:

"The number of people dying from dementia has been increasing year on year in Scotland and across the UK, and these statistics underline yet again the urgent need to tackle this devastating condition. While part of the increase has been driven by changes in the way death records are represented in official statistics, these changes only account for a small proportion of the rise seen here. Age is the biggest risk factor for dementia, and our ageing population is driving increases in the numbers of people living with and dying from the condition – but dementia is not an inevitable part of ageing and these figures must galvanise efforts to defeat the condition through research. Our health and social care systems are already struggling to cope with the impact of dementia, and unless we can find treatments able to fight diseases like Alzheimer's this challenge will only worsen.

"Advances in medicine have helped deliver increasing life expectancy, but to ensure people can live healthily as they grow older we need to see similar progress in the fight against dementia. Increased investment in research is imperative if we are to find the treatments and preventions that are so desperately needed."

Explore further: Recorded deaths from dementia more than double in 13 years

Related Stories

Recorded deaths from dementia more than double in 13 years

September 30, 2016
New figures released today show the proportion of people dying with a diagnosis of dementia more than doubled in 13 years. According to reports published by Public Health England, 15.8% of all deaths recorded in 2014 had ...

New figures show dementia is leading cause of death in England and Wales

November 14, 2016
New figures released by the Office of National Statistics show that for the first time, Alzheimer's disease and other dementias are the leading cause of death for England and Wales. Of the 529,655 deaths registered during ...

Dementia is leading cause of death for women in England and Wales

November 10, 2015
New figures released by the Office for National Statistics have shown that Alzheimer's disease and other dementias were the leading cause of death for women in England and Wales in 2014, and the second leading cause of death ...

US deaths from Alzheimer's soar 55 percent since 1999

May 25, 2017
Deaths from Alzheimer's in America have soared 55 percent since 1999, as the burden of this fatal form of dementia grows and the population ages, a federal health report said Thursday.

Report highlights increase in Alzheimer's drug prescriptions

January 20, 2016
A new report released today shows that Alzheimer's drug prescriptions have increased six times in the last decade, the proportion of people receiving a dementia diagnosis has increased over the last year by 112 per 100,000, ...

US deaths from Alzheimer's disease rise significantly

December 9, 2015
Nearly 10,000 more people died of Alzheimer's disease in the United States last year than in 2013, a significant rise of 8.1 percent, according to US health data released Wednesday.

Recommended for you

Hypothesis underpinning dementia research 'flawed'

October 16, 2018
A hypothesis which has been the standard way of explaining how the body develops Alzheimer's Disease for almost 30 years is flawed, according to a University of Manchester biologist.

Study suggests biological basis for depression, anxiety, sleep disturbances in older adults

October 15, 2018
UC San Francisco researchers, in collaboration with the unique Brazilian Biobank for Aging Studies (BBAS) at the University of São Paulo, have shown that the earliest stages of the brain degeneration associated with Alzheimer's ...

Many cases of dementia may arise from non-inherited DNA 'spelling mistakes'

October 15, 2018
Only a small proportion of cases of dementia are thought to be inherited—the cause of the vast majority is unknown. Now, in a study published today in the journal Nature Communications, a team of scientists led by researchers ...

Scientists create new map of brain region linked to Alzheimer's disease

October 8, 2018
Curing some of the most vexing diseases first requires navigating the world's most complex structure—the human brain. So, USC scientists have created the most detailed atlas yet of the brain's memory bank.

Previously unknown genetic aberrations found to be associated with Alzheimer's progression

October 8, 2018
In a large-scale analysis of RNA from postmortem human brain tissue, researchers at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai and Columbia University have identified specific RNA splicing events associated with Alzheimer's ...

Periodontal disease bacteria may kick-start Alzheimer's

October 4, 2018
Long-term exposure to periodontal disease bacteria causes inflammation and degeneration of brain neurons in mice that is similar to the effects of Alzheimer's disease in humans, according to a new study from researchers at ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.