More than 25 million people are afflicted with Alzheimer’s disease, with the associated estimated cost of care exceeding $200 billion annually.  Today, Alzheimer’s remains the largest unmet medical need in neurology, with the disease expected to afflict 100 million by 2050.  

Alzheimer's disease, the most common form of dementia, is characterized by progressive loss of memory and cognition, ultimately leading to complete debilitation and death. A hallmark feature of Alzheimer's pathology is the presence of insoluble protein deposits, known as amyloid beta, on the surface of nerve cells, which results from the accumulation of soluble amyloid beta in the brain. The effects of the disease are devastating to patients as well as their caregivers, with significant associated healthcare costs.

It is estimated that there are more than 5 million Americans and about 30 million people worldwide suffering from Alzheimer's disease, with the number expected to increase dramatically as the global population ages. Currently marketed drugs transiently affect some symptoms of the disease, but there are no drugs on the market today that slow or arrest the progression of the disease. These symptomatic drugs are projected to generate more than $6 billion in U.S. sales by 2010, indicating both the size of the market and the demand for effective treatment beyond symptomatic improvements.

Key facts about Alzheimer's disease:

  • 5.3 million people have Alzheimer's disease, which costs $172 billion in annual costs each year
  • Alzheimer's disease is the 7th leading cause of death
  • 10.9 million caregivers or Alzheimer's patients are unpaid each year

Source: Alzheimer’s Association

2010 Alzheimer's Disease Facts and Figures

This report details the escalation of Alzheimer's, which currently impacts over 5 million Americans. Facts and Figures conveys the burden of Alzheimer's and dementia on individuals, families, local and state government and the nation's healthcare system.