Cognitive decline and osteoporosis often coexist and some evidence suggests a causal link. However, there are no data on the longitudinal relationship between cognitive decline, bone loss and fracture risk, independent of aging. This study aimed to determine the association between: (i) cognitive decline and bone loss; and (ii) clinically significant cognitive decline (≥3 points) on Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE) over the first 5 years and subsequent fracture risk over the following 10 years. A total of 1741 women and 620 men aged ≥65 years from the population-based Canadian Multicentre Osteoporosis Study were followed from 1997 to 2013. Association between cognitive decline and (i) bone loss was estimated using mixed-effects models; and (ii) fracture risk was estimated using adjusted Cox models. Over 95% of participants had normal cognition at baseline (MMSE ≥ 24). The annual % change in MMSE was similar for both genders (women -0.33, interquartile range [IQR] -0.70 to +0.00; and men -0.34, IQR: -0.99 to 0.01). After multivariable adjustment, cognitive decline was associated with bone loss in women (6.5%; 95% confidence interval [CI], 3.2% to 9.9% for each percent decline in MMSE from baseline) but not men. Approximately 13% of participants experienced significant cognitive decline by year 5. In women, fracture risk was increased significantly (multivariable hazard ratio [HR], 1.61; 95% CI, 1.11 to 2.34). There were too few men to analyze. There was a significant association between cognitive decline and both bone loss and fracture risk, independent of aging, in women. Further studies are needed to determine mechanisms that link these common conditions. © 2021 American Society for Bone and Mineral Research (ASBMR).
© 2021 American Society for Bone and Mineral Research (ASBMR).