Medical Care and Long-Term Care Expenditures Attributable to Alzheimer's Disease Onset: Results from the LIFE Study

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Background: Alzheimer's disease (AD) can increase both medical care and long-Term care (LTC) costs, but the latter are frequently neglected in estimates of AD's economic burden. Objective: To elucidate the economic burden of new AD cases in Japan by estimating patient-level medical care and LTC expenditures over 3 years using a longitudinal database. Methods: The study was performed using monthly claims data from residents of 6 municipalities in Japan. We identified patients with new AD diagnoses between April 2015 and March 2016 with 3 years of follow-up data. Medical care and LTC expenditures were estimated from 1 year before onset until 3 years after onset. To quantify the additional AD-Attributable expenditures, AD patients were matched with non-AD controls using propensity scores, and their differences in expenditures were calculated. Results: After propensity score matching, the AD group and non-AD group each comprised 1748 individuals for analysis (AD group: mean age±standard deviation, 81.9±7.6 years; women, 66.0%). The total additional expenditures peaked at 1398 in the first month, followed by 1192 and 1031 in the second and third months, respectively. The additional LTC expenditures increased substantially 3 months after AD onset (227), and gradually increased thereafter. These additional LTC expenditures eventually exceeded the additional medical care expenditures in the second year after AD onset. Conclusion: Although total AD-Attributable expenditures peaked just after disease onset, the impact of LTC on these expenditures rose over time. Failure to include LTC expenditures would severely underestimate the economic burden of AD.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)807-817
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Alzheimer's Disease
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Neuroscience
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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