Associations Between Mild Cognitive Impairment and Hospitalization and Readmission

J Am Geriatr Soc. 2015 Sep;63(9):1880-5. doi: 10.1111/jgs.13593. Epub 2015 Aug 27.


Objectives: To determine whether older adults with mild cognitive impairment (MCI), a condition not previously explored as a risk factor, have more hospitalizations and 30-day readmissions than those with normal cognition.

Design: Post hoc analysis of prospectively gathered data on incident hospitalization and readmission from the Ginkgo Evaluation of Memory Study (GEMS), a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial designed to assess the effect of Ginkgo biloba on incidence of dementia.

Setting: GEMS was conducted in five academic medical centers in the United States.

Participants: Community-dwelling adults aged 75 and older with normal cognition (n = 2,314) or MCI (n = 428) at baseline cognitive testing (N = 2,742).

Measurements: Index hospitalization and 30-day hospital readmission, adjusted for age, sex, race, education, clinic site, trial assignment status, comorbidities, number of prescription medications, and living with an identified proxy.

Results: MCI was associated with a 17% greater risk of index hospitalization than normal cognition (adjusted hazard ratio (aHR) = 1.17, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 1.02-1.34)). In participants who lived with a proxy, MCI was associated with a 39% greater risk of index hospitalization (aHR = 1.39, 95% CI = 1.17-1.66). Baseline MCI was not associated with greater odds of 30-day hospital readmission (adjusted odds ratio = 0.90, 95% CI = 0.60-1.36).

Conclusion: MCI may represent a target condition for healthcare providers to coordinate support services in an effort to reduce hospitalization and subsequent disability.

Keywords: acute hospital utilization; mild cognitive impairment; rehospitalization.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Cognitive Dysfunction / epidemiology*
  • Female
  • Hospitalization / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Patient Readmission / statistics & numerical data*
  • Prospective Studies