American Diabetes Association
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Changes in Physical Activity and the Risk of Dementia in Patients With New-Onset Type 2 Diabetes: A Nationwide Cohort Study

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posted on 2022-02-22, 21:24 authored by Jung Eun Yoo, Kyungdo Han, Bongseong Kim, Sang-Hyun Park, Seon Mee Kim, Hye Soon Park, Ga Eun Nam
Objective: We investigated the association between interval changes in physical activity (PA) and dementia risk among patients with new-onset type 2 diabetes.

Methods: We identified 133,751 participants newly diagnosed with type 2 diabetes in a health screening (2009–2012) with a follow-up health screening within 2 years (2010–2015). PA level changes were categorized into the continuous lack of PA, decreaser, increaser, and continuous PA groups. Dementia was determined using dementia diagnosis codes and anti-dementia drug prescriptions.

Results: During the median follow-up of 4.8 years, 3,240 new cases of all-cause dementia developed. Regular PA was associated with lower risks of all-cause dementia (adjusted hazard ratio [aHR] 0.82, 95% CI=0.75–0.90), Alzheimer’s disease (AD) (aHR 0.85, 95% CI=0.77–0.95), and vascular dementia (VaD) (aHR 0.78, 95% CI=0.61–0.99). Increasers who started to engage in regular PA had a lower risk of all-cause dementia (aHR 0.86, 95% CI=0.77–0.96). Moreover, the risk was further reduced among those with continuous regular PA: all-cause dementia (aHR 0.73, 95% CI=0.62–0.85), AD (aHR 0.74, 95% CI=0.62–0.88), and VaD (aHR 0.62, 95% CI=0.40–0.94). Consistent results were noted in various subgroup analyses.

Conclusions: Regular PA was independently associated with lower risks of all-cause dementia, AD, and VaD among individuals with new-onset type 2 diabetes. Those with continuous regular PA, and to a lesser extent, those who started to engage in regular PA had a lower risk of dementia. Regular PA should be encouraged to prevent dementia in high-risk populations and those with new-onset type 2 diabetes.


This study was supported by the Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea, funded by the Ministry of Education (2019R1I1A1A01061757). This funding source had no role in the design and execution of our study, analysis and interpretation of the data, or decision to submit the results.


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