Risk of Cognitive Impairment Less Common Among the Elderly

Ken Langa, MD, PhD, is the lead author on a major new study showing that the risk for memory loss and other forms of cognitive impairment among Americans over the age of 70 was significantly lower in 2002 compared with 1993.In an article published online at www.alzheimersanddementia.org, Langa and colleagues report that this trend may be due in part to factors such as increasing education, wealth, and treatment for cardiovascular risk factors among older adults during this time period. This research, which has garnered international media attention, is based on data from the national Health and Retirement Study at the University of Michigan’s Institute for Social Research. Dr. Langa’s co-authors are Eric Larson, Jason Karlawish, David Cutler, Mohammed Kabeto, Scott Kim, and Allison Rosen.