Risk perception and preference for prevention of Alzheimer's disease.

TitleRisk perception and preference for prevention of Alzheimer's disease.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2009
AuthorsChung, S, Mehta, KM, Shumway, M, Alvidrez, J, Perez-Stable, EJ
JournalValue Health
Date Published2009 Jun
ISSN Number1524-4733
Call Numbernewpubs20100129_Chung_etal.pdf
KeywordsAge Factors, Aged, Aged, 80 and over, Alzheimer disease, Cognition, Female, Health education, Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice, Health Surveys, Humans, Linear Models, Male, Multivariate Analysis, Psychometrics, Risk Assessment, Risk Factors, Social Perception, Statistics as Topic, United States

OBJECTIVES: To understand how older adults perceive their risk of Alzheimer's Disease (AD) and how this may shape their medical care decisions, we examined whether presence of established risk factors of AD is associated with individuals' perceived risk of AD, and with preference for preventing AD.

PARTICIPANTS: Data came from the US Health and Retirement Study participants who were asked questions on AD risk perception (N = 778).

MEASUREMENTS: Perceived risk of AD was measured by respondents' estimate of their percent chance (0-100) developing AD in the next 10 years. Preference for AD prevention was measured with questions eliciting willingness to pay for a drug to prevent AD.

ANALYSIS: Multivariate linear regressions were used to estimate correlates of perceived risk and preference for prevention.

RESULTS: Better cognitive functioning and physical activity are associated with decreased perceived risk. Neither age nor cardiovascular disease is associated with perceived risk. African Americans have lower perceived risk than non-Latino whites; the difference is wider among people age 65 and above. Only 4% to 7% of the variation in perceived risk was explained by the model. Preference for prevention is stronger with increased perceived risk, but not with the presence of risk factors. Persons with better cognitive functioning, physical functioning, or wealth status have a stronger preference for prevention.

CONCLUSION: Some known risk factors appear to inform, but only modestly, individuals' perceived risk of AD. Furthermore, decisions about AD prevention may not be determined by objective needs alone, suggesting a potential discrepancy between need and demand for AD preventive care.

User Guide Notes


Endnote Keywords

Alzheimers Disease/risk factors/Subjective Probabilities/Physical Activity/Cognitive Functioning

Endnote ID


Alternate JournalValue Health
Citation Key7388
PubMed ID19900252
PubMed Central IDPMC4383096
Grant ListP30 AG015272 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States
P30-AG15272 / AG / NIA NIH HHS / United States