Seniors who have been hospitalized have a higher risk for experiencing a cognitive decline, a new study finds.
In a study of 1,870 Chicagoans over the age of 65, researchers tested the participants' cognitive functioning and long-term memory after a hospitalization. They found that overall cognitive function declined more than twice as fast after a first hospital stay. What's more, on specific cognitive tests, the rate of decline after the first hospital stay was more than three times faster on a long-term memory test and 1.5 times faster on a complex attention test.
These findings could be critical with hospitals and nursing homes increasingly being encouraged to work together to prevent hospital readmissions for nursing home residents, Rush University researchers said.