Open Access Open Badges Research article

A clinical registry of dementia based on the principle of epidemiological surveillance

Josep Garre-Olmo1*, Margarita Flaqué2, Jordi Gich3, Teresa Osuna Pulido4, Josefina Turbau5, Natalia Vallmajo6, Marta Viñas7, Secundí López-Pousa8 and Registry of Dementia of Girona Study Group (ReDeGi Group)

Author Affiliations

1 Research Unit, Institut d'Assistència Sanitària, Salt, Spain

2 Dementia Unit, Hospital de Palamós, Palamós, Spain

3 Neurodegenerative Disease Unit, Hospital Universitari Josep Trueta, Girona, Spain

4 Neurology Department, Hospital de Figueres, Figueres, Spain

5 Neurology Department, Hospital de Campdevànol, Campdevànol, Spain

6 Geriatrics Department, Hospital d'Olot, Olot, Spain

7 Neurology Department, Hospital de Blanes, Blanes, Spain

8 Dementia Unit, Hospital de Santa Caterina, Salt, Spain

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BMC Neurology 2009, 9:5  doi:10.1186/1471-2377-9-5

Published: 28 January 2009



Traditional epidemiological studies do not allow elucidating the reality of referral and diagnosis patterns of dementia in routine clinical practice within a defined territory. This information is useful and necessary in order to plan and allocate healthcare resources. This paper presents the results from a dementia case registry based on epidemiological surveillance fundamentals.


Standardised registry of dementia diagnoses made in 2007 by specialised care centres in the Health Region of Girona (RSG) (Spain), which encompasses an area of 5,517 sq. km and a reference population of 690,207 inhabitants.


577 cases of dementia were registered, of which 60.7% corresponded to cases of Alzheimer's disease. Presenile dementia accounted for 9.3% of the cases. Mean time between the onset of symptoms and clinical diagnosis was 2.4 years and the severity of the dementia was mild in 60.7% of the cases. High blood pressure, a family history of dementia, dislipidemia, and a past history of depression were the most common conditions prior to the onset of the disease (>20%).


The ReDeGi is a viable epidemiological surveillance device that provides information about the clinical and demographic characteristics of patients diagnosed with dementia in a defined geographical area.