Cognitive aging and rate of hospitalization in an Urban Population of Older People

Robert S. Wilson, Kumar Rajan, Lisa L. Barnes, Liesi E. Hebert, Carlos F. Mendes De Leon, Denis A. Evans

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Background.The association of age-related cognitive change with hospitalization is not well understood.Methods.At 3-year intervals for a mean of 8.7 years, 2,273 older residents of a geographically defined urban community underwent cognitive testing from which a global measure was derived. Hospitalization data were obtained from Part A Medicare beneficiary records. The association of level of cognitive function and rate of cognitive decline in each 3-year interval with subsequent rate of hospitalization was assessed using mixed-effects count regression models.Results.There were 9,091 hospitalizations involving 1,810 of the 2,273 individuals in the cohort (79.6%). Rate of hospitalization increased by 9.7% (95% confidence interval [CI]: 7.2, 12.3) with each additional study year; by 32.7% (95% CI: 26.8, 38.0) for each 1 point lower on the global cognitive measure at the beginning of an observation interval; and by 24.3% (95% CI: 16.6, 32.6) for each 1-point decrease in the global cognitive measure during the previous observation period. These associations persisted after adjustment for comorbidities and exclusion of those with a Mini-Mental State Examination score less than 26.Conclusion.Individual differences in trajectories of cognitive aging are associated with subsequent risk of hospitalization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)447-454
Number of pages8
JournalJournals of Gerontology - Series A Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Cognitive aging
  • Epidemiology
  • Hospital related
  • Public health.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aging
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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