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Open Access Research article

Cardiovascular risk factors and cognitive function in middle aged and elderly Lithuanian urban population: results from the HAPIEE study

Abdonas Tamosiunas*, Migle Baceviciene, Regina Reklaitiene, Ricardas Radisauskas, Kristina Jureniene, Adelina Azaraviciene, Dalia Luksiene, Vilija Malinauskiene, Evelina Daugeliene and Laura Sapranaviciute-Zabazlajeva

Author affiliations

Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, Academy of Medicine, Institute of Cardiology, Sukileliu 17, 50009, Kaunas, Lithuania

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Citation and License

BMC Neurology 2012, 12:149  doi:10.1186/1471-2377-12-149

Published: 30 November 2012

Abstract

Background

The purpose of this study was to examine associations between cardiovascular risk factors and cognitive ability in middle aged and elderly Lithuanian urban population.

Methods

Data from the survey performed in the framework of the HAPIEE (Health, Alcohol, Psychosocial Factors in Eastern Europe) study were presented. A random sample of 7,087 individuals aged 45–72 years was screened in 2006–2008.

Results

The scores of immediate recall and delayed verbal recall, cognitive speed and attention were significantly lower in men than in women; yet numerical ability scores were higher in men. Significant associations between lowered cognitive functions and previous stroke (in male OR = 2.52; 95% CI = 1.75-3.64; in female OR = 2.45; 95% CI = 1.75, 3.64) as well as ischemic heart disease history (among male OR = 1.28; 95% CI = 1.03-1.60) have been determined. Higher level of physical activity in leisure time (among female OR = 1.32; 95% CI = 1.03-1.69), poor self-rated health (among male OR = 1.57; 95% CI = 1.15-2.14) and poor quality of life (in male OR = 1.67; 95% CI = 1.07-2.61; in female OR = 2.81; 95% CI = 1.92-4.11) were related to lowered cognitive function.

Conclusions

The findings of the study suggest that associations between cardiovascular risk factors and lowered cognitive function among healthy middle-aged and elderly adults strongly depend on gender.