The Effect of Adherence to Screening Guidelines on the Risk of Alzheimer's Disease in Elderly Individuals Newly Diagnosed With Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus.
Objective: The aim of this study was to examine the possibility that type 2 diabetes and Alzheimer's disease may share common behavioral protective factors such as adherence to type 2 diabetes treatment guidelines given that these two diseases have both epidemiological and metabolic similarities. Method: The method used in this study is a retrospective cohort study of 3,797 U.S. Medicare fee-for-service beneficiaries aged 66+ newly diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and without a prior record of Alzheimer's disease based on the Health and Retirement Study. Results: Results of a left-truncated Cox model showed that adherence reduces the risk of Alzheimer's disease by 20% to 24%. Other significant effects were college education (hazard ratio [HR]: 0.65; p value: .023), stroke (HR: 1.40; p value: .013), and 4+ limitations in physical functioning (HR: 1.33; p value: .008). Discussion: Risk of Alzheimer's disease can be reduced by behavioral factors. Possible mechanisms may include earlier start of interventions to reduce blood glucose levels and improve insulin sensitivity.