Cognitive Risks Correlated With Lack of Sleep: Christian Agudelo, MD


The Evelyn F. McKnight Neurocognitive Scholar at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine provided background on a recently completed study correlating sleep and cognitive decline.

"Should we look at other demographics? Absolutely. Should other longitudinal studies that have access to middle aged white adults have that question asked for them? Absolutely."

A recently conducted study from researchers at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine found that among middle-aged Hispanics, the longer it takes an individual to fall asleep, the greater cognitive decline they will experience. The researchers used actigraphy to analyze at-home sleep patterns for 1035 adults, 45 to 64 years of age, from the Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos, and compared their cognitive functions from 7 years prior using current measurements.

Christian Agudelo, MD, clinical instructor and Evelyn F. McKnight Neurocognitive Scholar in the division of sleep medicine in the department of neurology, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, was the first author of the study, and claims the data is a good reminder about the importance of sleep but notes more research is needed. The study not only examined the correlation, but accounted for important sleep variables, such as sleep apnea, insomnia, and daytime sleepiness, as well as behavioral and medical issues including obesity.

In an interview with NeurologyLive, Agudelo gave context to why his study was done, how it was conducted, and whether there would be additional studies to see if this effect was consistent in other populations.

Researchers find link between sleep patterns and cognitive decline in middle-aged Hispanics. News release. University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. December 22, 2020. Accessed January 19, 2021.
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