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The “SuperAgers” construct in clinical practice: neuropsychological assessment of illiterate and educated elderly

  • Everton Balduino (a1), Brian Alvarez Ribeiro de Melo (a2), Larissa de Sousa Mota da Silva (a1), José Eduardo Martinelli (a1) and Juliana Francisca Cecato (a1)...

Abstract

Introduction:

The demographic transition is a global event intensified during the last decades that represents population aging. Thus, the studies directed to the elderly 80 years of age or more with preserved cognitive functions (named SuperAgers) emerges as a possible path to full comprehension of the health of those aging with acceptable levels of functionality and independency.

Objective:

To evaluate the cognitive performance of the elderly over 80 years old, associating the results to their educational level.

Method:

We evaluated 144 healthy elders with 80 years or more through the following cognitive tests Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE), Cambridge Cognitive Examination (CAMCOG), Clock Drawing Test (CDT), and Verbal Fluency Test (VF) and compared the tests’ scores with their educational level segmented in years of formal education, being the groups ILLITR (<1 year of schooling), 1TO4 (from 1 to 4 years of schooling), and 5MORE (>5 years of schooling).

Results:

There was positive influence of educational level on the cognitive tests’ score, which indicates higher cognitive reserve of the elderly with higher educational levels.

Conclusion:

The functionality and independence of the so-called SuperAgers is determined by the cognitive reserve acquired throughout life, mainly developed by the years of formal education.

Copyright

Corresponding author

Correspondence should be addressed to: Juliana Francisca Cecato, Geriatrics Division, Faculty of Medicine of Jundiaí, Prudente de Moraes St., 111, 13201-004, Jundiaí, Brazil. Phone/Fax: +55 11 4587 9161. Email: cecatojuliana@hotmail.com.

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Keywords

The “SuperAgers” construct in clinical practice: neuropsychological assessment of illiterate and educated elderly

  • Everton Balduino (a1), Brian Alvarez Ribeiro de Melo (a2), Larissa de Sousa Mota da Silva (a1), José Eduardo Martinelli (a1) and Juliana Francisca Cecato (a1)...

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