Dementia and diabetes risk score debuts

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A new tool can predict the 10-year risk of dementia for patients with diabetes.

Kaiser Permanente and University Medical Centre Utrecht in the Netherlands investigators developed the Diabetes-Specific Dementia Risk Score by isolating the eight factors most predictive of dementia, such as cerebrovascular disease and age. They analyzed records for 29,961 Kaiser Permanente patients over the age of 60 who had type 2 diabetes.

“While a few dementia risk scores exist, this is the first one that has been developed specifically for individuals with type 2 diabetes and encompasses diabetes-specific characteristics,” explained Rachel Whitmer, Ph.D., Kaiser Permanente Division of Research in California. 

By giving clinicians this tool, it allows preventive treatment for those at a risk for dementia, she said. Results were in Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology.

In another study, Kaiser Permanente of Georgia researchers found diabetics with persistent protein in their urine for up to five years had greater cognitive decline. Protein could be considered a risk marker, according to the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.