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Am J Alzheimers Dis Other Demen. 2007 Feb-Mar;22(1):62-77.

Language-enriched exercise plus socialization slows cognitive decline in Alzheimer's disease.

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Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences), University of Arizona, Tucson, USA.


This article reports the effects of language-enriched physical fitness interventions provided by University of Arizona undergraduate students to 24 mild- to moderate-stage Alzheimer's disease patients (AD Rehab group). Socialization experiences consisted of supervised volunteer work and cultural/recreational activities. Changes in global functioning and neuropsychological test performance were tracked and compared to those of a similar group of untreated patients from the Consortium for the Establishment of a Registry for Alzheimer's Disease (CERAD). Cohorts completing 4 semesters or longer showed no significant between-year changes after their first year on the Clinical Dementia Rating, a measure of global functioning, and on 5 or 6 of the cognitive and language measures. Comparisons with the CERAD sample suggested a slower rate of decline for the AD Rehab group. The stabilization of global and cognitive performance was not apparent among participants who completed only 2 semesters. Significant physical fitness and mood outcomes were previously reported in this journal.

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