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People with mild cognitive impairment that improves in the shorter term remain at increased risk of future cognitive decline

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Question: What factors are associated with reverting to normal cognition after a diagnosis of mild cognitive impairment (MCI), and what are the long-term risks of future cognitive decline after reverting to normal cognition?

Population: For assessing factors associated with reversion to normal cognition: 3020 adults (aged 65 years or older) with MCI (clinician judged cognitive decline greater than expected due to ageing, with no dementia and normal functioning) diagnosed at one of the National Alzheimer's Disease Coordinating Centers (ADCs), and who had their cognitive status re-assessed at an ADC 1 year later (±6 months). For assessing long-term risks of cognitive decline: 4412 adults (aged 65 years or more) with MCI, or no MCI and no dementia at the first visit and who had normal cognition or impairment but not MCI on the second visit were selected.

Setting: National Alzheimer's Disease Coordinating Centers, USA; September 2005 to June 2012.

Prognostic factors: MCI, categorised into four subtypes: memory impairment only (amnestic single domain); memory impairment and impairment in at least one other domain: …

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  • Sources of funding: National Institute on Aging.


  • Funding None.

  • Competing interests None.