Physical performance and cognition in older adults with and without dementia

Blankevoort, G., 2015, [S.l.]: [S.n.]. 155 p.

Research output: ThesisThesis fully internal (DIV)Academic

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  • Gerwin Blankevoort
At this moment there are more than two-hundred thousand patients with dementia and it is thought that this number will double in the coming decades. There is no cure for dementia. A preventive strategy could be physical exercise.
This thesis shows that even in older adults with advanced stages of dementia physical performance, such as balance, strength, endurance and basic activities of daily living can be improved through physical exercise. We also found that aspects of physical performance can be reliable measured in older adults with dementia. The most promising effects are obtained after interventions of three months or longer with a moderate intensity. It is thought that physical improvements precedes cognitive improvements.
We found that in cognitive healthy older adults quadriceps strength, balance, and endurance are associated with cognition and that this association is not significantly different for different cognitive domains. Moreover, this association was stronger for men. In older adults with dementia we found that walking speed and grip strength are associated with cognitive functioning. Gait speed is associated with memory and executive functions whereas grip strength is only associated with executive functions.
Future studies are necessary to investigate whether an increase in physical performance leads to an increase in cognitive performance in older adults with dementia.
Translated title of the contributionFysieke fitheid en cognitie bij ouderen met en zonder dementie
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
Award date11-Feb-2015
Place of Publication[S.l.]
Print ISBNs978-90-367-7313-3
Electronic ISBNs978-90-367-7312-6
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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