BACKGROUND: The prevalence of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and mobility limitations is high among older adults. The aim of this study was to investigate the association between MCI status and both performance-based and self-report measures of mobility in community-dwelling older adults. METHODS: An analysis was conducted on baseline data from the Boston Rehabilitative Impairment Study in the Elderly study, a cohort study of 430 primary care patients aged 65 or older. Neuropsychological tests identified participants with MCI and further subclassified those with impairment in memory domains (aMCI), nonmemory domains (naMCI), and multiple domains (mdMCI). Linear regression models were used to assess the association between MCI status and mobility performance in the Habitual Gait Speed, Figure of 8 Walk, Short Physical Performance Battery, and self-reported Late Life Function and Disability Instrument's Basic Lower Extremity and Advanced Lower Extremity function scales. RESULTS: Participants had a mean age of 76.6 years, and 42% were characterized with MCI. Participants with MCI performed significantly worse than participants without MCI (No-MCI) on all performance and self-report measures (p < .01). All MCI subtypes performed significantly worse than No-MCI on all mobility measures (p < .05) except for aMCI versus No-MCI on the Figure of 8 Walk (p = .054) and Basic Lower Extremity (p = .11). Moreover, compared with aMCI, mdMCI manifested worse performance on the Figure of 8 Walk and Short Physical Performance Battery, and naMCI manifested worse performance on Short Physical Performance Battery and Basic Lower Extremity. CONCLUSIONS: Among older community-dwelling primary care patients, performance on a broad range of mobility measures was worse among those with MCI, appearing poorest among those with nonmemory MCI.
Journals of Gerontology. Series A: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences, 2014, Vol 69, Issue 12, p. 1511-1518