(HealthDay News) — Albuminuria is associated with cognitive impairment, dementia, and cognitive decline, according to a review published online in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.

Marios K Georgakis, MD, from the University of Athens in Greece, and colleagues conducted a systematic review to examine the correlation between albuminuria and cognitive impairment, dementia, and cognitive function. Data were included for 32 eligible studies.

The researchers found that albuminuria correlated with cognitive impairment, dementia, clinical Alzheimer’s disease, and vascular dementia (odds ratios, 1.35, 1.35, 1.37, and 1.96, respectively). The significant effect persisted in longitudinal, population-based, and high-quality studies. In time-to-event analysis of prospective studies involving individuals without dementia at baseline, there was a significant association with incident dementia (risk ratio, 1.52). Subjects with albuminuria had worse global cognitive performance and accelerated cognitive decline (Hedge’s g, −0.13 and −0.20, respectively); they also scored lower in executive function, processing speed, verbal fluency, and verbal memory.

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“The stronger effects for vascular dementia and cognitive performance in domains primarily affected by microvascular disease support that the association could be mediated by shared microvascular pathology in the kidney and the brain,” the authors write.

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  1. Georgakis MK, Dimitriou NG, Karalexi MA, et al. Albuminuria in Association with Cognitive Function and Dementia: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. J Am Geriatr Soc. 2 February 2017. doi: 10.1111/jgs.14750