Global Prevalence

In 2004, Alzheimer’s Disease International convened a panel of international experts to review the global evidence on the prevalence of dementia, and to estimate the prevalence of dementia in each world region, the number of people affected, and the projected increases over time. The results were published in the medical journal The Lancet in 2005.

In 2009, The ADI office generated a more recent figure in 2009, based upon the Lancet/ADIestimates. The method included a systematic review of the world literature on the prevalence of dementia. Inclusion criteria included population-based studies of the prevalence of dementia among people aged 60 years and over.

Estimation of numbers of people with dementia

An estimated 35.6 million people worldwide will be living with dementia in 2010.The number is estimated to double every 20 years, reaching to 65.7 million in 2030 and 115.4 million in 2050 (figure 1.)

This poses a major concern, since Alzheimer’s disease and dementia have an enormous impact on societies. Poor recognition, under diagnosis and stigma cause significant problems for people with dementia and their families. (as reviewed in Prince, 2009).


Over the next 20 years, the numbers of people with dementia are anticipated to increase by 40% in Europe, 63% in North America, 77% in the southern Latin American cone and 89% in the developed Asia Pacific countries. In comparison, the percentage increase is expected to be 117% in East Asia, 107% in South Asia, 134-146% in the rest of Latin America, and 125% in North Africa and the Middle East.