UCL Institute of Health Informatics


New Paper: Incidence, Morbidity, Mortality and Disparities in Dementia using EHRs

18 March 2022

Lead author Sheng-Chia Chung publishes on dementia incidence, mortality and morbidity in this new paper with IHI authors Rui Providencia, Ana Torralbo, Natalie Fitzpatrick, Ken Li, Caroline Dale, and Spiros Denaxas.

Photo shows a plastic hospital model of a half brain

Based on the invaluable linked electronic health records from 4.3 million individuals in the United Kingdom, the study offers an integrated insight into the state of dementia. The team found:

- High prevalence multi-comorbidities (66.3%) of dementia patients at the time of diagnosis,

- Compared to matched controls, the leading causes of frequent hospitalisations among dementias patients prior to diagnosis were urinary tract infection, senility and cerebral infarction, compared to type 2 diabetes, chronic pain, and urinary tract infection for GP consultations,

- One in four dementia patients died during the first year after diagnosis, and the mortality increased to 61.9% in the fifth year,

- There is a substantial discrepancy in dementia disease burden across the population, and individuals from areas with higher deprivation in socioeconomic and living status had both higher dementia incidence and fatality.

Our findings highlight the need for targeted and diverse prevention strategies, such as risk factor control and comorbidity treatment, on dementia incidence, as well as for the evaluation of the effectiveness of dementia management strategies/models of care on prognosis.

Read the full paper