Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug Use and Alzheimer's Disease: A Case-Control Study in Rochester, Minnesota, 1980 Through 1984

Mayo Clin Proc. 1998 Oct;73(10):951-5. doi: 10.4065/73.10.951.


Objective: To compare the frequency of use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) among 302 incident cases of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and age- and sex-matched control subjects.

Design: We undertook a retrospective case-control study, using the resources of the Rochester Epidemiology Project.

Material and methods: In ongoing studies of dementia in Rochester, Minnesota, we identified all incident cases of AD with onset between 1980 and 1984. From among all Rochester residents who received care at Mayo Clinic Rochester during those years, we selected one age- (within 3 years) and sex-matched control subject. For this study, exposure to a prescription NSAID was defined as prescribed use for 7 or more days during the 2-year window of time encompassing the year of onset and the year before onset among cases and the corresponding index year and the year prior for control subjects.

Results: The odds ratio (OR) for exposure, as described, to a prescription NSAID versus no exposure to any NSAID was 0.79 (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.45 to 1.38); the OR was 1.00 (95% CI, 0.52 to 1.92) for women and 0.40 (95% CI, 0.13 to 1.29) for men. Similarly, the overall OR for aspirin exposure versus no NSAID exposure was 0.90 (95% CI, 0.54 to 1.50).

Conclusion: These data are suggestive but not confirmatory of a protective effect of NSAIDs for AD.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Alzheimer Disease / prevention & control*
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / administration & dosage
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / pharmacology*
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Data Interpretation, Statistical
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Odds Ratio
  • Retrospective Studies


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal