For the 1st time, India to issue guidelines for dementia

The Society for Alzheimers and Ageing Research (SAAR) is working on guidelines for dementia, which is a serious disease facing the elderly in India.

Guidelines on dementia to be issued on 24 February

The guidelines will be the first set of instructions for the illness in the country. A questionnaire has also been sent to neurologists across the country to share details on the kind of patients they see in their memory-clinics.

India has over 1.5 crore dementia patients. Of this nearly six lakhs in Delhi and the number is likely to rise in the future. The number of elderly in India will be 25 crore by 2025, which is equal to the population of Europe.

In a 2007 survey, dementia was rated as more deadly than cancer by the elderly

Dementia is so dreaded because people are scared of losing their identity. From initially forgetting a pen or keys, they eventually forget everything, even family members to their own identity.

The guidelines will help streamline and simplify the management of dementia in the country.

A set of 20 questions have been sent to nearly 4,000 neurologists in the country. These range from the type and age-group of patients to what medicines these doctors prescribe to the patients and their side-effects.

Based on the responses, SAAR will make an analysed set of guidelines which will be the first in the country. A booklet containing these guidelines will be released at the Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital in Delhi.

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