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WALKING IRREGULARITIES CAN BE A SIGN OF COGNITIVE DECLINE

 

Gait disturbances — including slowing of walking pace or variations in stride — may be an indicator of cognitive decline, new research suggests. New studies presented here at the Alzheimer's Association International Conference (AAIC) 2012, suggest that observing and evaluating gait in older patients may be a valuable tool when trying to determine the need for further cognitive evaluation.

In the first study, investigators from the Basel Mobility Center in Basel, Switzerland, showed that gait speed slowed and became more variable as cognitive decline progressed. Similarly, the Mayo Clinic Study of Aging (MCSA) showed that study participants with lower cadence, velocity, and amplitude of the stride length experienced significantly larger declines in global cognition, memory, and executive function.

 

 

Source: Caroline Cassels, Medscape News [7/15/12]

 

 

 

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