TH-P01-097 - Does perceived stress in increase the incidence of dementia? Results from the Copenhagen City Heart Study

Psychobiological stress reaction
Poster Presentation
3 hours 30 minutes
O'Brien Foyer
Employee stress and burnout
Psychobiological stress reaction
Does perceived stress in increase the incidence of dementia? Results from the Copenhagen City Heart Study
K. Nabe-Nielsen 1,*, K. I. Ahmed 1, A. H. Garde 1 2, E. Prescott 3, N. H. Rod 1, N. H. Rod 1, G. Waldemar 4, Å. M. Hansen 1 2
1Department of Public Health, University of Copenhagen, 2The National Research Centre for the Working Environment, 3Department of Cardiology, Bispebjerg Hospital, 4The Danish Dementia Research Centre, Copenhagen, Denmark
Content: Purpose
Chronic psychological stress has received increasing attention as a potential risk factor for dementia. Therefore, the aim of the study was to investigate whether high levels of perceived stress increase the incidence of dementia in old age.
We used data from 11 787 participants from the 1981-83-wave of the Copenhagen City Heart Study. Information about dementia diagnoses was obtained from Danish register. The participants were followed until 2014. Stress was defined as feeling tense, nervous, impatient, anxious and/or sleepless, and perceived stress was measured with two questions about the intensity and frequency of stress. These two questions were combined into one scale (range: 0 to 6), and we applied a Cox Proportional Hazards model.
In our sample, 1433 participants (12%) were registered with a dementia diagnosis. In preliminary analyses, higher levels of perceived stress were associated with a higher hazard ratio of dementia in a dose-response manner (highest stress score: HR=1.6, 95% CI: 1.2-2.1). In further analyses, we investigate the role of education, depression and cardiovascular risk factors in the relationship between perceived stress and dementia.
Perceived stress indicates a higher incidence of dementia in old age. How much of this association that can be explained by well-known risk factors for dementia remains to be investigated.
Research/Practical Implications
Our results contribute to the understanding of the relation between stress and cognitive function.
This is one of the very few previous studies that investigate the association between perceived stress in midlife and dementia in old age.


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