Survey findings presented at the Alzheimer's Association International Conference in Paris on Wednesday showed that Alzheimer’s is the second-most feared disease after cancer.
The telephone survey consisted of 2,678 adults aged 18 and older across the United States and Europe and was conducted by the Harvard School of Public Health and Alzheimer Europe.
Participants were asked to identify the sickness they had the most concern for out of a list of several diseases including cancer, heart disease and stroke.
The results showed that approximately 25 percent of respondents from four of the five countries most feared getting Alzheimer's.
The survey found that most participants would seek testing for Alzheimer’s even if they had not experienced any symptoms of the disease.
According to the survey, a cause for high alert for the Alzheimer’s disease could be because many of the participants were directly affiliated with individuals afflicted by the illness.
Statistics showed that of the people who participated in the study, over 70 percent in France, Germany, Spain, and the United States had acquaintances affected by Alzheimer’s, and about 30 percent of total participants had family members suffering from the disease.
Recent studies show that Alzheimer’s starts developing nearly a decade before symptoms start to appear.
According to Reuters, Dr. Gary Kennedy of the division of geriatric psychiatry at Montefiore Medical Center in New York, states early testing is well worth it for people who have symptoms.
Dr. Kennedy claims that early diagnosis is important so families can prepare and make their wishes known about how they want to be cared for while they are still capable.
Current Alzheimer’s medications only treat symptoms but none have been shown to totally hinder the advance of the disease.