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Hearing impairment in dementia – how to reconcile two intertwined challenges in diagnostic screening

Author(s): U. Lemke

Journal: Audiology Research
ISSN 2039-4330

Volume: 1;
Issue: 1S;
Start page: e15;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Keywords: diagnostic screening | hearing impairment | dementia.

Prevalence of dementia as well as hearing impairment is increasing with age. As a consequence older people are often affected by both conditions. Especially among the people with dementia a majority also has significant hearing problems. With population aging and more people getting even older the number of these patients will increase immensely over the next years. Dementia refers to a spectrum of brain disorders, all of which involve cognitive impairment but vary widely in terms of the cause, course, and prognosis. Dementia is more than just memory impairment; it involves impairment in multiple areas of cognition. Prevalence of dementia exponentially increases from 2% of people under the age of 65 years with doubling of numbers every five years up to 30-50% at the age of 90 years. Dementia is the leading cause of institutionalization among the elderly. Prevalence among elderly nursing home residents is estimated to be 60- 80%...
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