Association Between Different Forms of Elder Mistreatment and Cognitive Change

Mengting Li, Xin Qi Dong

Publication Date: 09/09/2021

Objectives: Elder mistreatment (EM) is associated with worse physical health and psychological well-being, but little is known regarding its cognitive consequences. Methods: Data were derived from the T1–T2 PINE (n = 2713). EM was measured by psychological, physical, and sexual mistreatment; financial exploitation; and caregiver neglect. Cognitive function was evaluated by global cognition, episodic memory, working memory, processing speed, and Mini-Mental State Examination. Linear regression was used. Results: At baseline, physical mistreatment and caregiver neglect were associated with lower global cognition and cognitive domains, while psychological mistreatment was associated with higher cognitive function. Older adults with incident psychological mistreatment, physical mistreatment, and caregiver neglect had a faster decrease in global cognition and cognitive domains over 2 years. Discussion: This study is among the first to examine the association between different forms of EM and cognitive change. These findings provide a basis for engaging ethnic minorities with EM to maintain cognitive health.