Prevalence of Dementia and Main Subtypes in Mexico: The Study on Aging and Dementia in Mexico (SADEM)

J Alzheimers Dis. 2022;89(3):931-941. doi: 10.3233/JAD-220012.


Background: Dementia is a priority public health issue due to its high prevalence worldwide and its economic, social, and health impact. However, there are few reports in Mexico based on formal tests and with a clinical approach based on the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th edition (DSM-5).

Objective: This study estimates the prevalence of the main types of dementia among elderly people living in the community in Mexico City.

Methods: A population-based, two-step study was conducted, including 6,204 elderly individuals aged 60 or above with in-home assessment. All participants were screened for cognitive impairment; those who presented some cognitive problem underwent a standardized neurological examination. Each diagnosis was based on the criteria for dementia in the DSM-5, and the final consensus diagnosis of dementia was determined by an expert panel.

Results: The global estimated prevalence of dementia in the Mexican population was 7.8% met the criteria for Alzheimer's disease, 4.3% for vascular dementia, and 2.1% for mixed dementia. The prevalence of dementia was higher in women than in men (15.3% versus 12.5%, respectively).

Conclusion: These results provide evidence to propose strategies for Latin American countries where dementia represents a challenge due to the heterogeneity of the populations and socioeconomic disparities, requiring early diagnosis and at the first levels of care.

Keywords: Alzheimer’s disease; Mexican people; SADEM; dementia; elderly people; prevalence.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aging
  • Alzheimer Disease* / diagnosis
  • Dementia* / diagnosis
  • Dementia* / epidemiology
  • Dementia* / psychology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mexico / epidemiology
  • Prevalence