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Neuroepidemiology. 2007;29(3-4):156-62. Epub 2007 Nov 27.

Gait speed predicts decline in attention and psychomotor speed in older adults: the health aging and body composition study.

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1
Department of Medicine, Division of Geriatric Medicine, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA 15213, USA. inzitarim@edc.pitt.edu

Abstract

BACKGROUND/AIMS:

Gait speed is cross-sectionally associated with attention and psychomotor speed in older community dwellers. It is unclear if gait speed predicts decline in these cognitive domains over time.

METHODS:

Usual gait speed (m/s) over 6 m was measured at baseline in 2,776 Health, Aging and Body Composition Study participants (mean age +/- SD 73.5 +/- 2.8 years, 53% women, 37% blacks). The Digit Symbol Substitution Test (DSST) was administered at baseline and after 5 years to assess attention and psychomotor speed. We used multivariate logistic regression models to calculate the risk of DSST 5-year decline [>1 SD from mean change (9 points)] across quartiles of gait speed, adjusting for demographics, weight, physical activity, comorbidities, depression and Modified Mini-Mental State Examination.

RESULTS:

After 5 years, 389 (17.1%) participants declined in DSST. Compared to those in the highest quartile of gait speed (>1.35 m/s), participants in the lowest quartile (<1.05 m/s) were more likely to decline in DSST independently of the considered covariates (OR 1.74, 95% CI 1.21-2.51, adjusted p for trend across quartiles = 0.006).

CONCLUSIONS:

In this cohort of older community dwellers, gait speed independently predicted a decline in DSST after 5 years.

PMID:
18042999
PMCID:
PMC2824580
DOI:
10.1159/000111577
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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