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Neurology. 2007 Jul 17;69(3):237-42.

Preclinical cognitive decline and subsequent sleep disturbance in older women.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry, University of California, San Francisco, and the San Francisco VA Medical Center, San Francisco, CA, USA.



To determine whether longitudinal cognitive decline is associated with increased risk of sleep disturbance in older, nondemented, community-dwelling women.


We studied 2,474 women (mean age 68.9 years) who were part of a prospective study started in 1986; women with baseline or follow-up evidence of possible dementia were excluded. Cognitive data were gathered over 15 years for modified Mini-Mental State Examination (mMMSE) and 13 years for Trails B; cognitive decline was defined as declining >1.5 SDs on the mMMSE (> or =3 points) or Trails B (>92 seconds). Sleep disturbance was measured objectively using actigraphy (Sleepwatch-O, Ambulatory Monitoring) at the 15-year follow-up visit; measures included total sleep hours, sleep efficiency, sleep latency, napping, and time awake after sleep onset (WASO).


During follow-up, 11% of women declined on mMMSE and 15% on Trails B. Cognitive decliners were more likely than non-decliners to experience sleep disturbance at follow-up on most measures. For women who declined on mMMSE, adjusted ORs (aOR) (95% CI) were 1.71 (1.24, 2.37) for sleep efficiency <70%, 1.57 (1.12, 2.21) for sleep latency > or =1 hour, and 1.43 (1.07, 1.92) for WASO > or =90 minutes. Results were similar for women who declined on Trails B; in addition, these women were more likely to nap >2 hours per day (aOR: 1.73; 95% CI: 1.28, 2.33). Cognitive decline on either test was not associated with total sleep time.


Cognitive decline is associated with sleep disturbance in nondemented community-dwelling elderly women.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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