Simple, cheap tests predict dementia risk well in advance – Human – Science & Technology

Simple tests assessing the grip strength and mobility of seniors can predict the risk of deterioration in their health, including the onset of dementia.

Researchers from Edith Cowan University in Western Australia evaluated more than 1,000 women with an average age of 75 in research published in the Journal of Cachexia Sarcopenia and Muscle. They measured their grip strength and the TUG (Timed Up and Go) test.

The TUG test measures the time it takes for a person to get up from a chair, walk three meters, turn around and sit back down. After five years, they repeated the measurement and monitored the loss of performance.

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Over the next 15 years, nearly 17 percent of the women in the study developed dementia that required hospitalization or even death.

The main risk factor was a lower grip strength and a slower TUG, regardless of other factors such as genetics, smoking, drinking alcohol or physical activity.

Women with the weakest grip strength were twice as likely to develop dementia compared to women with a strong grip. In the case of the TUG test, the probability of dementia among the slowest was more than twice as high.

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Grip strength can be easily measured with a dynamometer. “Neither grip strength nor TUG is routinely done in clinical practice, although both (methods) are inexpensive and simple screening tools,” said study co-author Dr. Marc Sim. They could therefore help healthcare professionals identify the risk of dementia in good time.

“High-risk individuals could then benefit from primary prevention programs such as a healthy diet and a physically active lifestyle,” said Sim.

Source: Pravda – Veda a technika by

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