Anxiety Tied to Dementia

Anxiety may be associated with an increased risk for cognitive decline and dementia, with the strongest associations in older patients, a new meta-analysis focusing on community populations shows.

“Irrespective of the association is causal or not, it is important for the clinician to be aware of anxiety as a possible predictor for dementia, especially when the anxiety emerges at late life,” the investigators, with first author Bernice Gulpers, Department of Psychiatry and Psychology, the School for Mental Health and Neuroscience, Maastricht University Medical Center, and Alzheimer Center Limburg, the Netherlands, write.

Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) is a known risk factor for dementia, and although depression and anxiety have been shown to be the most common psychiatric disorders that copresent with MCI, most research has focused on depression, the authors note.

To better understand the role of anxiety, the researchers conducted a literature search of longitudinal studies published through January 2015 that focused on anxiety as a possible risk factor for cognitive decline.

Read the full article at http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/866696