We previously showed that dual decline in memory and gait speed was associated with an increased risk of dementia compared to memory or gait decline only or no decline. We now characterized cognitive and neuroimaging profiles of dual decliners by comparing longitudinal rates of change in various cognitive domains (n = 664) and brain volumes (n = 391; selected frontal, temporal, parietal, subcortical, and cerebellar areas) in Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging participants who experienced age-related dual decline to others. Compared to others, dual decliners had steeper declines in verbal fluency, attention, and sensorimotor function by Pegboard nondominant hand performance. Dual decliners had greater brain volume loss in superior frontal gyrus, superior parietal gyrus, precuneus, thalamus, and cerebellum (all p ≤ 0.01). Participants with age-related dual decline experienced steeper declines in multiple cognitive domains and greater brain volume loss in cognitive, sensorimotor, and locomotion areas. Impaired sensorimotor integration and locomotion are underlying features of dual decline. Whether these features contribute to the increased risk of dementia should be investigated.
Published by Elsevier Inc.