Age-Related Memory Loss More Common in Men

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Men in their 70s and 80s may be added acceptable than women of the aforementioned age to advance the anamnesis accident and cerebral problems that generally adviser Alzheimer’s disease, a new abstraction has found.

In the study, which appears in the account Neurology, Mayo Clinic advisers advised 1,450 aged bodies in Minnesota every 15 months for an boilerplate of three and a bisected years. During that time, 7.2% of the men and 5.7% of the women developed the mental-function problems accepted as balmy cerebral crime (MCI), with or after any accompanying anamnesis loss.
The findings surprised the researchers because previous studies have suggested that more women than men ultimately go on to develop Alzheimer’s and other forms of full-blown dementia. The fact that men appear to have higher rates of MCI but lower rates of dementia may hold important clues for preventing or delaying cognitive decline, the researchers suggest.
The lead author of the study, Rosebud Roberts, a professor of epidemiology at the Mayo Clinic, in Rochester, Minn, says that women with MCI may progress to dementia faster than men, causing them to be undercounted during the MCI phase. But sex-related differences in physiology and brain function may also play a role.
MCI isn’t necessarily a abiding condition. Roughly one-third of the abstraction participants who accustomed an MCI analysis afterward a array of tests and interviews after bigger to the point that they no best met the analytic belief at a after checkup.

This alleged antique to normal, which has been apparent in added studies, may announce that in some cases the academician absolutely aliment some of the accident it incurs—and this may be area sex differences arise into play, says Kenneth Rockwood, M.D., a assistant of aged anesthetic at Dalhousie University, in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Physical activity, for instance, is believed to account men abnormally than women, says Rockwood, who wrote an beat accompanying the abstraction but was not complex in the new research. In women, exercise appears to be added acceptable to prolong life, he says, while in men it’s added acceptable to advance academician function.

“We ability be seeing the cerebral allowances of exercise in men” in the abstraction findings, Rockwood says. “Women who exercise additionally get some cerebral benefit, but they arise to get a greater adaptation benefit.”

The findings suggest also that men may be more vulnerable than women to certain risk factors for MCI, says Rhonna Shatz, D.O., director of behavioral neurology at the Henry Ford Health System, in Detroit.
High blood pressure, obesity, diabetes, and other known—and treatable—risk factors for MCI and dementia tend to be more common in men, which may explain the higher rate of MCI, Shatz says.
“What [the study] tells us is that, particularly in men, there are probably a whole set of factors that we have to consider as particular to their gender or lifestyle, or both, that are impacting them a lot earlier,” Shatz says. “We need to take a step back and ask if we are really doing the job we need to control the things we know are modifiable.”
Although Roberts and her colleagues didn’t investigate accident factors such as aerial claret pressure, they did booty into annual added factors that accept been apparent to affect MCI risk, such as age, educational attainment, and conjugal status. (People with added apprenticeship and bodies who were affiliated had lower ante of MCI than the added abstraction participants—a arrangement that has been empiric in antecedent studies.)

Incorporating these factors into the abstracts helped the advisers aphorism out the achievability that sex disparities in MCI and dementia ante are due alone to the actuality that women tend to alive longer, and are accordingly added acceptable than men to alive continued abundant to advance dementia.
More research will be needed to confirm the findings, however. Although the new study was thorough and well designed, Shatz says, the definition of MCI remains open to interpretation. A particular doctor or nurse may be more likely to arrive at an MCI diagnosis than another health professional looking at the same patient, which makes it difficult to draw broad conclusions about the prevalence of the condition.
“We don’t have good standard markers of what MCI is,” Shatz says.

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