Progression of Alzheimer disease in Europe: Data from the European ICTUS study

B. Vellas, L. Hausner, L. Frölich, C. Cantet, V. Gardette, E. Reynish, S. Gillette, E. Agüera-Morales, S. Auriacombe, M. Boada, R. Bullock, J. Byrne, V. Camus, A. Cherubini, M. Eriksdotter-Jönhagen, G. B. Frisoni, S. Hasselbalch, R. W. Jones, P. Martinez-Lage, M. O. RikkertM. Tsolaki, P. J. Ousset, F. Pasquier, J. M. Ribera-Casado, A. S. Rigaud, P. Robert, G. Rodriguez, E. Salmon, A. Salva, P. Scheltens, A. Schneider, A. Sinclair, L. Spiru, J. Touchon, D. Zekry, B. Winblad, S. Andrieu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The clinical progression of Alzheimer disease (AD) was studied in European subjects under treatment with AChE inhibitors (AChE-I) in relation to geographical location over a 2-years period. One thousand three hundred and six subjects from 11 European countries were clustered into 3 regions (North, South, West) and investigated with biannual follow-up over 2 years. Primary outcomes were cognitive, functional and behavioral measures. Caregiver burden, hospital admission and admission to nursing home were also recorded. Participant cognitive function declined non-linearly over time (MMSE: -1.5 pts/first year, -2.5 pts/second year; ADAScog: + 3.5 pts/first year, + 4.8 pts/second year), while the progression of behavioral disturbances (NPI scale) was linear. Neither scale showed regional differences, and progression of the disease was similar across Europe despite different health care systems. Functional decline (ADL, IADL) tended to progress more rapidly in Southern Europe (p=0.09), while progression of caregiver burden (Zarit Burden Interview) was most rapid in Northern Europe (5.6 pts/y, p=0.04). Incidences of hospital admission (10.44, 95%CI: 8.13-12.75, p

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)902-912
Number of pages11
JournalCurrent Alzheimer Research
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Caregiver burden, hospital admission
  • Clinical course
  • Cognitive
  • Cohort study
  • Dementia
  • Europe
  • Functional
  • Geographical variation
  • NPI

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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