According to a new study published in the journal Neurology, men over the age of 70 are more susceptible to memory loss and cognitive impairment than women. Researchers from the Mayo Clinic examined 1,450 people in their 70s and 80s every 15 months for three and a half years and found 7.2 percent of men and 5.7 percent of women developed mild cognitive impairment during that time. Previous studies, however, have found men are less likely to develop full-blown dementia and Alzheimer’s disease than women. Rosebud Roberts, lead author of the study and a professor of epidemiology at the Mayo Clinic, said that, though men were more likely to develop mild cognitive impairment, women with cognitive problems may progress into dementia and Alzheimer’s disease more quickly. More here.
The first increase in monthly social security and supplemental security income benefits since 2009 takes effect this year. The cost-of-living adjustment automatically raises benefits based on increases in the Consumer Price Index as measured during the third quarter of each year. If prices rise, so do payments. If prices fall, benefits remain the same. In 2009, payments increased 5.8 percent based on spikes in energy prices. The past two years, however, payments remained flat due to low inflation. The 3.6 percent increase for 2012 means nearly 60 million social-security recipients will get an average of an additional $467 this year. More here.
According to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the percentage of Americans being screened for cancer continues to fall below recommended national targets. Sallyann Coleman King of the CDC’s Division of Cancer Prevention and Control said screening for colorectal, cervical, and breast cancers can help find the disease at an earlier stage when it can be treated more effectively. Still, the report found that breast cancer screening rates were 72.4 percent, short of the national goal of 81 percent. Screening for cervical cancer was 10 percent below the target and colorectal cancer screening rates were 12 percent short of the goal. The report based its findings on data gathered during the CDC’s 2010 National Health Interview Survey. More here.