Functional limitations in older adults who have cognitive impairment without dementia

J Geriatr Psychiatry Neurol. 2013 Jun;26(2):78-85. doi: 10.1177/0891988713481264. Epub 2013 Apr 4.


Objective: To characterize the prevalence of functional limitations among older adults with cognitive impairment without dementia (CIND).

Methods: Secondary data analysis was performed using the Aging, Demographics, and Memory Study data set. A total of 856 individuals aged ≥ 71 years were assigned to 3 diagnostic cognitive categories. A questionnaire was completed by a proxy informant regarding functional limitations for 744 of the 856 respondents.

Results: Of the 744 patients, 263 (13.9%) had dementia, 201 (21.3%) had CIND, and 280 (64.8%) had normal cognition. Informants reported ≥1 instrumental activities of daily living (ADLs) limitation in 45% of the patients with CIND compared to 13% of the patients with normal cognition and 85% of the patients with dementia (P < .001). The ADL impairments among individuals with CIND were primarily attributed to physical health problems (n = 41; 40%).

Conclusions: Many individuals with CIND have impairment in a range of complex and basic daily activities, largely due to physical health problems.

Keywords: ADL; IADL; cognitive impairment; functional impairment; functional limitations.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Activities of Daily Living*
  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Cognitive Dysfunction / diagnosis*
  • Cognitive Dysfunction / physiopathology
  • Dementia / diagnosis
  • Dementia / physiopathology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Surveys and Questionnaires