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Hearing Loss Linked Cognitive Decline Risk in Men

Alzheimers Dement; ePub 2019 Jan 29; Curhan, et al

Hearing loss was associated with substantially higher risk of subsequent subjective cognitive decline in men, according to a recent study. Researchers conducted an 8-year (2008–2016) longitudinal study of 10,107 men aged ≥62 years who reported their hearing status in 2006 and had no subjective cognitive concerns in 2008. Change in subjective cognitive function (SCF) scores was assessed by a 6-item questionnaire, and subjective decline was defined as new report of at least 1 SCF concern during follow-up. They found:

  • Hearing loss was associated with higher risk of SCF decline.
  • Compared with no hearing loss, the multivariable-adjusted relative risk of incident SCF decline was 1.30, 1.42, and 1.54 among men with mild, moderate, and severe hearing loss (no hearing aids), respectively.
  • Among men with severe hearing loss who used hearing aids, the multivariable-adjusted relative risk was 1.37.

Curhan SG, Willett WC, Grodstein F, Curhan GC. Longitudinal study of hearing loss and subjective cognitive function decline in men. [Published online ahead of print January 29, 2019]. Alzheimers Dement. doi:10.1016/j.jalz.2018.11.004.