Objective: To investigate the relationship between high FVIII clotting activity (FVIII:C), MRI-defined white matter hyperintensities (WMH) and cognitive function over time.
Methods: Data from the population-based Cardiovascular Health Study (n = 5,888, aged ≥65) were used. FVIII:C was measured in blood samples taken at baseline. WMH burden was assessed on two cranial MRI scans taken roughly 5 years apart. Cognitive function was assessed annually using the Modified Mini-Mental State Examination (3MSE) and Digit Symbol Substitution Test (DSST). We used ordinal logistic regression models adjusted for demographic and cardiovascular factors in cross-sectional and longitudinal WMH analyses, and adjusted linear regression and linear mixed models in the analyses of cognitive function.
Results: After adjustment for confounding, higher levels of FVIII:C were not strongly associated with the burden of WMH on the initial MRI scan (OR>p75 = 1.20, 95% CI 0.99-1.45; N = 2,735) nor with WMH burden worsening over time (OR>p75 = 1.18, 95% CI 0.87-1.59; N = 1,527). High FVIII:C showed no strong association with cognitive scores cross-sectionally (3MSE>p75 β = -0.06, 95%CI -0.45 to 0.32, N = 4,005; DSST>p75 β = -0.69, 95%CI -1.52 to 0.13, N = 3,954) or over time (3MSE>p75 β = -0.07,95% CI -0.58 to 0.44, N = 2,764; DSST>p75 β = -0.22, 95% CI -0.97 to 0.53, N = 2,306) after confounding adjustment.
Interpretation: The results from this cohort study of older adult participants indicate no strong relationships between higher FVIII:C levels and WMH burden or cognitive function in cross-sectional and longitudinal analyses.