Potentially modifiable dementia risk factors in all Australians and within population groups: an analysis using cross-sectional survey data

See, Rhiann Sue, Thompson, Fintan, Russell, Sarah, Quigley, Rachel, Esterman, Adrian, Harriss, Linton R., Hyde, Zoë, Taylor, Sean, Radford, Kylie, LoGiudice, Dina, McDermott, Robyn, Livingston, Gill, and Strivens, Edward (2023) Potentially modifiable dementia risk factors in all Australians and within population groups: an analysis using cross-sectional survey data. The Lancet Public Health, 8 (9). e717-e725.

PDF (Published Version) - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.

Download (1MB) | Preview
View at Publisher Website: https://doi.org/10.1016/S2468-2667(23)00...


Background: Dementia is the second leading cause of disease burden in Australia. We aimed to calculate the population attributable fractions (PAFs) of dementia attributable to 11 of 12 previously identified potentially modifiable health and social risk factors (less education, hearing loss, hypertension, obesity, smoking, depression, social isolation, physical inactivity, diabetes, alcohol excess, air pollution, and traumatic brain injury), for Australians overall and three population groups (First Nations, and those of European and Asian ancestry).

Methods: We calculated the prevalence of dementia risk factors (excluding traumatic brain injury) and PAFs, adjusted for communality, from the cross-sectional National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Survey (2018-19), National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Survey (2014-15), National Health Survey (2017-18), and General Social Survey (2014) conducted by the Australian Bureau of Statistics. We conducted sensitivity analyses using proxy estimates for traumatic brain injury (12th known risk factor) for which national data were not available.

Findings: A large proportion (38·2%, 95% CI 37·2-39·2) of dementia in Australia was theoretically attributable to the 11 risk factors; 44·9% (43·1-46·7) for First Nations Australians, 36·4% (34·8-38·1) for European ancestry, and 33·6% (30·1-37·2) for Asian ancestry. Including traumatic brain injury increased the PAF to 40·6% (39·6-41·6) for all Australians. Physical inactivity (8·3%, 7·5-9·2), hearing loss (7·0%, 6·4-7·6), and obesity (6·6%, 6·0-7·3) accounted for approximately half of the total PAF estimates across Australia, and for all three population groups.

Interpretation: Our PAF estimates indicate a substantial proportion of dementia in Australia is potentially preventable, which is broadly consistent with global trends and results from other countries. The highest potential for dementia prevention was among First Nations Australians, reflecting the enduring effect of upstream social, political, environmental, and economic disadvantage, leading to greater life-course exposure to dementia risk factors. Although there were common dementia risk factors across different population groups, prevention strategies should be informed by community consultation and be culturally and linguistically appropriate.

Item ID: 80312
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 2468-2667
Copyright Information: © 2023 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an Open Access article under the CC BY 4.0 license.
Funders: Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC)
Date Deposited: 12 Feb 2024 22:44
FoR Codes: 42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4206 Public health > 420605 Preventative health care @ 80%
42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4206 Public health > 420606 Social determinants of health @ 20%
SEO Codes: 20 HEALTH > 2005 Specific population health (excl. Indigenous health) > 200502 Health related to ageing @ 70%
20 HEALTH > 2001 Clinical health > 200104 Prevention of human diseases and conditions @ 30%
Downloads: Total: 13
Last 12 Months: 8
More Statistics

Actions (Repository Staff Only)

Item Control Page Item Control Page