Cost of Alzheimer's disease in a developing country setting

Int J Geriatr Psychiatry. 2005 Jul;20(7):616-22. doi: 10.1002/gps.1332.


Purpose: To evaluate the economic impact of AD in Denizli, Turkey.

Design and methods: This observational study was conducted with 42 AD patients and their primary caregivers. During the initial interview, demographic data and medical histories were collected with questionnaires. For an observational period of 15 days, data on time spent for patient care were collected using standard forms. Calculations on direct cost (e.g. per day medication, outpatient physician visits during the last 3 months), indirect cost (e.g. time spent for care by caregiver for daily living (ADL) and instrumental activity of daily living (IADL)) were made by summing up and taking averages of the appropriate items. ANOVA, and linear regressions were the methods for comparisons.

Results: The primary caregivers of the patients mainly were their children and/or spouses. The maximum mean time spent (h/week) was 21.0 (17.5) for severely damaged cognition. The average annual cost per case was between $1,766 [95% Confidence Intervals (CI); 1.300-2.231] and $4,930 (95% CI; 3.3714-6.147). The amount of caregiver cost was the most significant item in the overall cost and it showed an increase with the declining cognitive function of patients. Daily medication cost reflected the same pattern. In contrast, cost of outpatient physician was the lowest among the patients with the worst cognition.

Conclusions: These results suggest that recently AD has become a significant cost for developing countries. This pilot study gives an idea of the cost of AD in developing countries where determining the actual cost can be difficult.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Alzheimer Disease / economics*
  • Alzheimer Disease / nursing
  • Alzheimer Disease / therapy
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Caregivers / economics
  • Cost of Illness*
  • Developing Countries*
  • Female
  • Health Care Costs / statistics & numerical data
  • Health Services for the Aged / economics
  • Home Nursing / economics
  • Humans
  • Linear Models
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Time Factors
  • Turkey