Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home

Public knowledge about dementia in South Korea: a community-based cross-sectional survey

  • Hyun-Ju Seo (a1), Dong Young Lee (a2) and Mi Ra Sung (a3)

Abstract

Background:

The highest increase in the prevalence of dementia in the elderly population is expected in South Korea than in any other country in the world. However, there is no assessment of the community-based general populations’ understanding of dementia in South Korea, in spite of the increasing burden of dementia. Thus, this study assessed the public knowledge about dementia.

Methods:

This is a population-based, cross-sectional study of 2,189 participants, aged 10 years or older, and living in Seoul, South Korea. A 12-item questionnaire with true/false responses was used to assess the knowledge about dementia from June to November 2011. The data obtained were analyzed using quantitative methods.

Results:

The mean score for the knowledge about dementia was 9.0 ± 2.1 points out of 12 points. More than half of the respondents (52.7%) reported that dementia is not treatable, and one-third of the participants did not know that Alzheimer's disease is the most common cause of dementia. The level of dementia knowledge was negatively associated with increasing age, and positively associated with higher education level.

Conclusions:

Our results suggest that although laypersons had a fair knowledge about dementia, further educational programs and campaigns are needed to improve knowledge about dementia, more focusing on elderly adults as the target audience and emphasizing the causes and treatments of dementia as educational contents.

Copyright

Corresponding author

Correspondence should be addressed to: Dr. Dong Young Lee (MD, PhD), Department of Neuropsychiatry, Seoul National University Hospital, 101 Daehak-ro, Jongno-gu, Seoul 110-744, South Korea. Phone: +82-2-2072-2205; Fax: +82-2-744-7241. Email: selfpsy@snu.ac.kr.

References

Hide All
Arai, Y., Arai, A. and Zarit, S. H. (2008). What do we know about dementia?: a survey on knowledge about dementia in the general public of Japan. International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, 23, 433438. doi:10.1002/gps.1977.
Ayalon, L. and Arean, P. A. (2004). Knowledge of Alzheimer's disease in four ethnic groups of older adults. International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, 19, 5157.
Banerjee, S. and Wittenberg, R. (2009). Clinical and cost-effectiveness of services for early diagnosis and intervention in dementia. International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, 24, 748754. doi:10.1002/gps.2191.
Boustani, M. A., Justiss, M. D., Frame, A., Austrom, M. G., Perkins, A. J., Cai, X. (2011). Caregiver and noncaregiver attitudes toward dementia screening. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 59, 681686. doi:10.1111/j.1532-5415.2011.03327.x.
Brookmeyer, R., Gray, S. and Kawas, C. (1998). Projections of Alzheimer's disease in the United States and the public health impact of delaying disease onset. American Journal of Public Health, 88, 13371342.
Carpenter, B. D., Balsis, S., Otilingam, P. G., Hanson, P. K. and Gatz, M. (2009). The Alzheimer’ s Disease Knowledge Scale : development and psychometric properties. The Gerontologist, 49, 236247.
Cho, M. J. (2008). Nationwide Study on the Prevalence of Dementia in Korean elders. Seoul, South Korea: Seoul National University Hospital. Available at: http://www.bokjiro.go.kr/data/bookView.do?board_sid=295&data_sid=197972; last accessed 31 July 2014.
Choi, W. S. (2005). Female volunteers' activities in public service and their perception about dementia. Journal of the Korean Geronotological society, 25, 91110.
Fujishiro, H., Umegaki, H., Suzuki, Y., Nakamura, A., Hirakawa, Y. and Iquchi, A. (2005). Awareness of dementia in older adults attending dementia-prevention programs in community healthcare centers. Japanese Journal of Geriatrics, 42, 340345.
Han, D. H. (1994). A study of the elderly attitude toward senile dementia. Journal of the Korean Geriatrics Society, 14, 6983.
Ho, E. Y. and Woo, B. K. (2013). Dementia knowledge and information seeking of Chinese Americans. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 61, 647648. doi:10.1111/jgs.12194.
Hurt, C. S., Burns, A., Brown, R. G. and Barrowclough, C. (2012). Why don't older adults with subjective memory complaints seek help? International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, 27, 394400.
Kim, N. C. (1999). A study on the knowledge and attitude about senile dementia of the elderly. Journal of Korean Academy of Community Health Nursing, 13, 111.
Kim, K. A., Kim, K. A. and Sung, M. R. (2011). A study on the level of dementia-related knowledge and attitude among care workers. Korean Journal of Care Management, 6, 2351.
Lee, S. E., Lee, H. Y. and Diwan, S. (2010). What do Korean-American immigrants know about Alzheimer's disease (AD)? The impact of acculturation and exposure to the disease on AD knowledge. International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, 25, 6673. doi:10.1002/gps.2299.
Lee, Y. K., Sung, M. R. and Lee, D. Y. (2011). Comorbidity and health habits of Seoul city elders with dementia. Journal of Korean Academy of Nursing, 41, 411422. doi:10.4040/jkan.2011.41.3.411.
Li, X., Fang, W., Su, N., Liu, Y., Xiao, S. and Xiao, Z. (2011). Survey in Shanghai communities: the public awareness of and attitude towards dementia. Psychogeriatrics, 11, 8389. doi:10.1111/j.1479-8301.2010.00349.x.
O’Connor, M. L. and McFadden, S. H. (2010). Development and psychometric validation of the Dementia Attitudes Scale. International Journal of Alzheimer's Disease, 2010, 454218. doi:10.4061/2010/454218.
Park, J. H., Eum, J. H., Bold, B. and Cheong, H. K. (2013). Burden of disease due to dementia in the elderly population of Korea: present and future. BMC Public Health, 13, 293. doi:10.1186/1471-2458-13-293.
Prince, M. J., Acosta, D., Castro-Costa, E., Jackson, J. and Shaji, K. S. (2009). Packages of care for dementia in low- and middle-income countries. PLoS Medicine, 6. doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1000176.
Regional Public Health Act. (2010). Available at: http://elaw.klri.re.kr/kor_service/lawView.do?hseq=7374&lang=ENG; last accessed 20 July 2014.
Saad, K. (2012). Dementia awareness starts in school. Nursing Times, 108, 29.
Sahin, H. A., Gurvit, I. H., Emre, M., Hanagasi, H. A., Bilqic, B. and Harmanci, H. (2006). The attitude of elderly lay people towards the symptoms of dementia. International Psychogeriatrics, 18, 251258.
Spector, A., Orrell, M., Schepers, A. and Shanahan, N. (2012). A systematic review of “knowledge of dementia” outcome measures. Ageing Research Reviews, 11, 6777. doi:10.1016/j.arr.2011.09.002.
Statistics Korea. (2012). Statistics on the Aged. Available at: http://kostat.go.kr/portal/english/news/1/23/1/index.board; last accessed 24 March 2013.
Tan, W. J., Hong, S. I., Luo, N., Lo, T. J. and Yap, P. (2012). The lay public's understanding and perception of dementia in a developed Asian nation. Dementia and Geriatric Cognitive Disorders Extra, 2, 433444. doi:10.1159/000343079.
Teel, C. S. (2004). Rural practitioners’ experiences in dementia diagnosis and treatment. Aging Mental Health, 8, 422429.
Werner, P. (2003). Knowledge about symptoms of Alzheimer's disease: correlates and relationship to help-seeking behavior. International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, 18, 10291036.
Woo, B. K. (2013). Knowledge of dementia among Chinese American immigrants. Asian Journal of Psychiatry, 6, 351352. doi:10.1016/j.ajp.2013.03.010.
Yong, M. H., Kim, E. J. and Yang, Y. A. (2010). A study on the knowledge of families with demented elderly persons for dementia. Journal of Occupational Therapy for the Aged and Dementia, 2, 4150.

Keywords

Type Description Title
WORD
Supplementary materials

Seo Supplementary Material
Table S1

 Word (44 KB)
44 KB

Metrics

Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed