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In a re-analysis of eight case-control studies on Alzheimer's disease we explored several medical conditions that had previously been suggested as possible risk factors for Alzheimer's disease. History of hypothyroidism was increased in cases as compared to controls (relative risk 2.3; 95% confidence interval 1.0-5.4). Severe headaches and migraine were inversely related to Alzheimer's disease (relative risk 0.7; 95% confidence interval 0.5-1.0). More cases than controls reported epilepsy before onset of Alzheimer's disease (relative risk 1.6; 95% confidence interval 0.7-3.5), especially for epilepsy with an onset within 10 years of onset of dementia. Neurotropic viruses, allergic conditions, general anaesthesia and blood transfusions were not associated with Alzheimer's disease.

Original publication




Journal article


International journal of epidemiology

Publication Date



20 Suppl 2


S36 - S42


Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Erasmus University Medical School, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.


Humans, Alzheimer Disease, Risk Factors, Case-Control Studies, United States, Australia, Europe, Meta-Analysis as Topic