The impact of hearing impairment and hearing aid use on progression to mild cognitive impairment in cognitively healthy adults: An observational cohort study

Magda Bucholc, Sarah Bauermeister, Daman Kaur, Paula L. McClean, Stephen Todd

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Abstract

Introduction: We assessed the association of self-reported hearing impairment and hearing aid use with cognitive decline and progression to mild cognitive impairment (MCI).

Methods: We used a large referral-based cohort of 4358 participants obtained from the National Alzheimer's Coordinating Center. The standard covariate-adjusted Cox proportional hazards model, the marginal structural Cox model with inverse probability weighting, standardized Kaplan-Meier curves, and linear mixed-effects models were applied to test the hypotheses.

Results: Hearing impairment was associated with increased risk of MCI (standardized hazard ratio [HR] 2.58, 95% confidence interval [CI: 1.73 to 3.84], P = .004) and an accelerated rate of cognitive decline ( P < .001). Hearing aid users were less likely to develop MCI than hearing-impaired individuals who did not use a hearing aid (HR 0.47, 95% CI [0.29 to 0.74], P = .001). No difference in risk of MCI was observed between individuals with normal hearing and hearing-impaired adults using hearing aids (HR 0.86, 95% CI [0.56 to 1.34], P = .51).

Discussion: Use of hearing aids may help mitigate cognitive decline associated with hearing loss.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere12248
JournalAlzheimer's and Dementia: Translational Research and Clinical Interventions
Volume8
Issue number1
Early online date22 Feb 2022
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 22 Feb 2022

Bibliographical note

© 2022 The Authors. Alzheimer's & Dementia: Diagnosis, Assessment & Disease Monitoring published by Wiley Periodicals, LLC on behalf of Alzheimer's Association.

Keywords

  • RESEARCH ARTICLE
  • RESEARCH ARTICLES
  • cognitive decline
  • cognitive impairment
  • dementia
  • dementia prevention
  • hearing aid
  • hearing impairment
  • hearing loss
  • mild cognitive impairment
  • preventive intervention

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