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Cognitive frailty among Malaysian older adults: baseline findings from the LRGS TUA cohort study

Authors Malek Rivan NF, Shahar S, Rajab NF, Singh DKA, Din NC, Hazlina M, Hamid TATA

Received 3 April 2019

Accepted for publication 15 June 2019

Published 25 July 2019 Volume 2019:14 Pages 1343—1352

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/CIA.S211027

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Amy Norman

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Richard Walker


Nurul Fatin Malek Rivan,1 Suzana Shahar,2 Nor Fadilah Rajab,3 Devinder Kaur Ajit Singh,4 Normah Che Din,5 Mahadzir Hazlina,6 Tengku Aizan Tengku Abdul Hamid7

1Nutritional Sciences Programme and Centre for Healthy Ageing and Wellness (H-CARE), Faculty of Health Sciences, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, 50300 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; 2Dietetics Programme and Centre for Healthy Ageing and Wellness (H-CARE), Faculty of Health Sciences, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, 50300 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; 3Biomedical Science Programme, School of Diagnostic and Applied Health Sciences, Faculty of Health Sciences, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, 50300 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; 4Physiotherapy Programme, School of Rehabilitation Sciences, Faculty of Health Sciences, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; 5Health Psychology Programme and Centre for Healthy Ageing and Wellness (H-CARE), Faculty of Health Sciences, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, 50300 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; 6Internal Medicine & Geriatric Department, Pusat Perubatan Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; 7Malaysian Research Institute on Ageing, Universiti Putra Malaysia, 43400 Serdang, Selangor, Malaysia

Purpose: This study was aimed at determining the presence of cognitive frailty and its associated factors among community-dwelling older adults from the “LRGS-Towards Useful Aging (TUA)” longitudinal study.
Patients and methods: The available data related to cognitive frailty among a sub-sample of older adults aged 60 years and above (n=815) from two states in Malaysia were analysed. In the LRGS-TUA study, a comprehensive interview-based questionnaire was administered to obtain the socio-demographic information of the participants, followed by assessments to examine the cognitive function, functional status, dietary intake, lifestyle, psychosocial status and biomarkers associated with cognitive frailty. The factors associated with cognitive frailty were assessed using a bivariate logistic regression (BLR).
Results: The majority of the older adults were categorized as robust (68.4%), followed by cognitively pre-frail (37.4%) and cognitively frail (2.2%). The data on the cognitively frail and pre-frail groups were combined for comparison with the robust group. A hierarchical BLR indicated that advancing age (OR=1.04, 95% CI:1.01–1.08, p<0.05) and depression (OR=1.49, 95% CI:1.34–1.65, p<0.001) scored lower on the Activity of Daily Living (ADL) scale (OR=0.98, 95% CI:0.96–0.99, p<0.05), while low social support (OR=0.98, 95% CI:0.97–0.99, p<0.05) and low niacin intake (OR=0.94, 95% CI:0.89–0.99, p<0.05) were found to be significant factors for cognitive frailty. Higher oxidative stress (MDA) and lower telomerase activity were also associated with cognitive frailty (p<0.05).
Conclusion: Older age, a lower niacin intake, lack of social support, depression and lower functional status were identified as significant factors associated with cognitive frailty among older Malaysian adults. MDA and telomerase activity can be used as potential biomarkers for the identification of cognitive frailty.

Keywords: frailty, mild cognitive impairment, cognitive frailty, older adults

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