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Association of Social Integration with Cognitive Status in a Multi-Ethnic Cohort: Results From the Kaiser Healthy Aging and Diverse Life Experiences Study

We evaluated overall and race-specific relationships between social integration and cognition in older adults. Kaiser Healthy Aging and Diverse Life Experiences (KHANDLE) cohort participants included 1343 Asian, Black, Latino, or non-Latino White Kaiser Permanente Northern California members. We estimated the effect of social integration on verbal episodic memory, semantic memory, and executive function derived from the Spanish and English Neuropsychological Assessment (SENAS) Scales. Social integration scores included marital status; volunteer activity; and contact with children, relatives, friends, and confidants. We estimated covariate-adjusted linear mixed-effects models for baseline and 17-month follow-up cognition. Social integration was associated with higher baseline cognitive scores (average  β = 0.066 (95% confidence interval: 0.040, 0.092)) overall and in each racial/ethnic group. The association did not vary by race/ethnicity. Social integration was not associated with the estimated rate of cognitive change. In this cohort, more social integration was similarly associated with better late-life cognition across racial/ethnic groups.

Authors: Calmasini, Camilla; Swinnerton, Kaitlin N; Zimmerman, Scott C; Peterson, Rachel L; George, Kristen M; Gilsanz, Paola; Hayes-Larson, Eleanor; Mayeda, Elizabeth Rose; Mungas, Dan M; Whitmer, Rachel A; Glymour, Medellena Maria

J Geriatr Psychiatry Neurol. 2022 11;35(6):789-799. Epub 2022-01-25.

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