Clinical Edge

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USPSTF again deems evidence insufficient to recommend cognitive impairment screening in older adults

Key clinical point: Because of insufficient evidence, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force has declined to make a recommendation on screening for cognitive impairment in adults aged 65 years or older.

Major finding: Moderate evidence was found to support the accuracy of screening instruments, treatment with acetylcholinesterase inhibitors and memantine for patients with moderate dementia, and psychoeducation interventions for caregivers of patients with moderate dementia.Study details: A systematic review of the evidence on screening for cognitive impairment, which included 287 studies with more than 280,000 older adults.

Disclosures: All members of the USPSTF received travel reimbursement and an honorarium for participating in meetings. One member reported receiving grants and personal fees from Healthwise. The study was funded by the Department of Health & Human Services. One of the authors reported receiving grants from the National Institutes of Health and the Food and Drug Administration. Dr. Petersen and Dr. Yaffe reported consulting for, and receiving funding from, various pharmaceutical companies, foundations, and government organizations.


Owens DK et al. JAMA. 2020 Feb 25. doi: 10.1001/jama.2020.0435; Patnode CD et al. JAMA. 2020 Feb 25. doi: 10.1001/jama.2019.22258.