Greater Handgrip Strength Tied to Lower Risk for Depression

Weak handgrip in older adults is linked to a higher risk for depression — while a stronger handgrip may have protective benefits, new research suggests. In a study of more than 115,000 adults, there was a significant association between a stronger handgrip, up to 40 kg in men and 27 kg in women, and lower … Read more

Noninvasive Laser Therapy Tied to Improved Short-Term Memory

Transcranial photobiomodulation (tPBM), a noninvasive laser light therapy, can improve short-term memory in young adults when applied to the right prefrontal cortex (PFC) of the brain, new research suggests. Investigators compared the effect of 1064 nm of tPBM delivered over a 12-minute session to the right PFC vs three other treatment arms: delivery of the … Read more

More Evidence Insomnia Contributes to Cognitive Decline

A new study provides more evidence that insomnia may contribute to cognitive decline in older adults and shows that difficulty falling asleep in midlife may be most indicative of future cognitive impairment. Investigators found that having trouble falling asleep most nights (vs rarely/never) was equivalent to the effect of 2 to 3 years of aging … Read more

Watching TV, Using Computer Have Opposite Ties to Dementia Risk

Watching TV may increase your risk of dementia, while using a computer may lower it, new research suggests. The relationship to dementia with these activities remained strong no matter how much physical activity a person did, the authors wrote in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Both watching TV and using a computer have … Read more

Plasma Biomarkers Predict COVID Neurologic Complications

SAN DIEGO – Even after recovery of an acute COVID-19 infection, some patients experience extended or even long-term symptoms that can range from mild to debilitating. Some of these symptoms are neurological: headaches, brain fog, cognitive impairment, loss of taste or smell, and even cerebrovascular complications such stroke. There are even hints that COVID-19 infection … Read more

Long-term Erratic Sleep May Predict Later-Life Cognitive Problems

CHARLOTTE, NC — Erratic sleep patterns over years or even decades, along with a patient’s age and history of depression, may be harbingers of cognitive impairment later in life, an analysis of decades of data from a large sleep study has found. “What we were a little surprised to find in this model was that … Read more

Simple Screening Tool Assesses Cognitive Impairment Post-COVID

Editor’s note: Find the latest COVID-19 news and guidance in Medscape’s Coronavirus Resource Center. The covered study in this summary was published on medRxiv.org as a preprint and has not yet been peer reviewed. Key Takeaway Patients with post-COVID syndrome have a long-term cognitive impairment that can last for more than 3 months and can … Read more

Impaired Vision an Overlooked Dementia Risk Factor

Impaired vision in older adults is an underrecognized and modifiable dementia risk factor, new research suggests. Investigators analyzed estimated population attributable fractions (PAFs) associated with dementia in more than 16,000 older adults. A PAF represents the number of dementia cases that could be prevented if a given risk factor were eliminated. Results showed the PAF … Read more

Does Metformin Blunt Diabetes Link to Brain Aging?

Researchers published the study covered in this summary on medRxiv.org as a preprint that has not yet been reviewed. Key Takeaways Type 2 diabetes appears to significantly accelerate normal brain aging. Metformin use does not appear to prevent neurocognitive decline. Why This Matters Although preliminary evidence links type 2 diabetes to neurologic and cognitive decline, … Read more

More Evidence COVID ‘Brain Fog’ Is Biologically Based

Patients with persistent cognitive impairment months after illness with mild COVID-19 have higher levels of inflammatory markers in their cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). Researchers found elevated levels of CSF immune activation and immunovascular markers in individuals with cognitive post-acute sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 infection (PASC). Patients whose cognitive symptoms developed during the acute phase of COVID-19 had … Read more