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Lithium May Reduce The Risk Of Dementia- A Report

Lithium May Reduce The Risk Of Dementia- Dementia is a condition in which a person’s cognitive functioning — thinking, remembering, and reasoning — has deteriorated to the point where it interferes with daily living and activities. Some patients of this disease lose control of their emotions, and their personalities shift. It can range in intensity from the mildest stage, when it is just starting to damage a person’s ability to function, to the most severe level, when the person is wholly reliant on others for basic daily activities.

It becomes more common as people age (about one-third of all persons aged 85 and up may have some kind of dementia), but it is not a normal component of ageing. Many people live well into their nineties and beyond without showing any signs of this disease.

A Global Killer- A Risk of Dementia or How to Reduce the Risk of Dementia

Although the total number of patients who took this element was small, the analysis revealed that individuals who received lithium were less likely to acquire dementia than those who did not. Their results support the idea that lithium could be used to prevent dementia or Reduce the risk of dementia and that big randomized controlled trials could be conducted.


It is the biggest cause of death in older Western populations, although there are currently no prophylactic treatments. It affects more than 55 million people globally, with Alzheimer’s disease being the most common type.

Researchers have discovered a relationship that suggests it may reduce the incidence of this disease, which affects almost one million individuals in the United Kingdom. The University of Cambridge researchers analyzed the medical records of over 30,000 people from the Cambridge shire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust. Between 2005 and 2019, the patients were all above the age of 50 and used NHS mental health treatments. The study was published in the ‘PLoS Medicine’ publication.

It has been presented as a potential treatment for patients who have been diagnosed having this disease or early cognitive impairment in previous research, however it is uncertain if it can postpone or even prevent the development of this disease due to the small size of these studies. “The number of people with dementia continues to rise, putting enormous strain on healthcare systems,” said  Dr Shanquan Chen.

Finding a Link

The authors conducted a retrospective examination of 29,618 patients’ mental health records gathered from Cambridge shire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust. Between January 1, 2005, and December 31, 2019, the patients were treated. All of the people in the study were over the age of 50 (mean age: 73.9). Males made up 40.2 percent of the cohort, and white people made up 71%.

A one-year follow-up had been provided to the patients. They had also never previously been diagnosed with this disease or mild cognitive impairment. It had been used to treat 548 of the 29,618 individuals in the study group.

During their investigation, the team discovered that 53 (9.7%) of those who had had lithium medication had been diagnosed with dementia. However, 3,244 (11.2 percent) of those who did not receive lithium were diagnosed with this disease.

Reduce the risk of dementia

Its use was linked to a lower risk of dementia when researchers took into account other mental and physical disorders, other prescribed medications, and habits including smoking. This was valid for long-term and short-term users alike.

Assessing Lithium’s Role

Despite finding a relationship, the researchers acknowledged that the study had several limitations. To begin with, the study was purely observational. Furthermore, because the number of patients getting this in the entire cohort was modest, larger clinical trials are needed to prove that lithium may be used to treat this disease. Another drawback of the study was the amount of patients identified with bipolar disorder in the cohort. It is frequently linked to an increased risk of this disease.

“Because bipolar illness is the most common reason for prescribing lithium, we expected to find that people with the disease were more likely to develop dementia, but our findings revealed the opposite. It’s far too soon to say for sure, but lithium may lower the risk of this disease in persons who have bipolar disorder “Dr. Chen noted.

Despite these limitations, the latest study backs up prior research that suggests lithium could aid with dementia. As a result, more clinical trials will be needed to determine conclusively whether lithium can help with the illness.

Another study drawback was the amount of individuals diagnosed with bipolar disorder, which is generally linked to an increased risk of this disease. “We expected to find that people with bipolar disorder were more likely to get dementia, because it is the most common reason for prescribing lithium,” said Chen. “It’s far too soon to say for sure,” he noted, “but It may lessen the risk of dementia in patients with bipolar disorder.”

risk of dementia


This study backs up previous research that suggests lithium may be reduce the risk of this disease. To see if lithium is indeed beneficial in these circumstances, more experimental medicine and clinical research are required. The study was funded in part by the UK Medical Research Council as well as the Cambridge Biomedical Research Centre of the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR).

People May Ask

Is lithium effective in preventing dementia?

Finally, a countrywide research involving all these element patients indicated that continuous lithium medication was related with a lowered rate of this disease to the same level as the general population, however this rate increased somewhat with the number of prescriptions written.

Is lithium effective in preventing Alzheimer’s disease?

In a new study, a group of researchers found that lithium in dosages up to 400 times lower than what is normally prescribed for mood disorders can both stop signs of advanced Alzheimer’s disease and recover lost cognitive function when given in a formulation that enables transit to the brain.

Is lithium linked to cognitive issues?

Its use for a long time might lead to cortical atrophy and cognitive problems. Lithium users should have their brain MRIs evaluated.

Is Bipolar Disorder Linked to a Higher Risk of this disease?

We discovered that having a history of bipolar disorder increased the risk of this disease in older people.

Is lithium used in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease?

Lithium appears to be capable of reducing Alzheimer’s disease pathology and boosting adult hippocampus neurogenesis, according to research. Lithium-treated patients with amnestic MCI and Alzheimer’s disease have shown to have pro-cognitive effects in clinical investigations.


The opinions presented in this article should not be regarded as a replacement for medical advice. For more information, please contact your treating physician.

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