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Keywords:

  • Alzheimer's disease;
  • home;
  • landmark analysis;
  • longevity;
  • nursing home

ABSTRACT There is concern that life is curtailed when patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD) are institutionalized. To determine whether placement in a nursing home reduces their remaining years of life, we examined the experience of White patients with AD (n=890) enrolled in the Consortium to Establish a Registry for Alzheimer's Disease (CERAD). Proportional hazards survival analysis using the landmark approach (with the landmark set to 12 months after CERAD entry and reevaluated at succeeding 6-month time intervals through 5 years) indicated that longevity at home and in the nursing home was comparable. Thus, in these patients enrolled at tertiary care medical centers, living at home or in a nursing home did not affect time to death. These data suggest that when home care is no longer feasible, families and nurses counseling them should not feel that they are curtailing life by placing an AD patient in a nursing home.