BackgroundDetecting patients with undiagnosed dementia is an important clinical challenge. Changes in medication adherence might represent an early sign of cognitive impairment. We sought to examine antihypertensive and statin adherence trajectories in community-dwelling older adults, comparing people who went on to develop dementia to those who did not.
MethodsWe analyzed data from Adult Changes in Thought (ACT), a population-based cohort study embedded within an integrated healthcare delivery system. Analyses included 4368 participants aged ?65?years who had at least one follow-up visit. Research-quality dementia diagnoses were used to identify cases. We selected non-dementia control visits matched on age, sex, and study cohort that occurred at similar ACT follow-up time as the case's dementia onset; we treated this as the index date. Participants were included if they were prevalent users of either a statin or antihypertensive medication on the first day of follow up - 3?years prior to the index date. Using prescription fill dates and days supply, we calculated daily binary medication availability measures for each participant ('days covered') over 3?years leading up to the index date. We used group-based trajectory models to identify patterns of antihypertensive and statin adherence, and used conditional logistic regression to examine associations between adherence trajectories and dementia.
ResultsFour trajectories were identified for antihypertensive users (292 cases, 3890 control visits), including near perfect (n =?1877, 36.6% cases, 45.5% controls), high (n =?1840, 43.2% cases, 44.1% controls), moderate (n =?365, 18.5% cases, 8.0% controls) and early poor adherence (n =?100, 1.7% cases, 2.4% controls). Odds of dementia was 3 times greater for those with moderate antihypertensive adherence compared to those with near perfect adherence (adjusted OR 3.0, 95% CI 2.0, 4.3). Four trajectories were identified for statin users (148 cases, 1131 control visits), including high (n =?1004, 75.0% cases, 79.0% controls), moderate (n =?192, 19.6% cases, 14.4% controls), early poor (n =?43, 2.0% cases, 3.5% controls), and delayed poor adherence (n =?40, 3.4% cases, 3.1% controls). No association was detected between statin adherence trajectories and dementia.
ConclusionsPatterns of medication adherence may be useful to identify a subset of people at higher likelihood of developing dementia.
SUBMITTER: Marcum ZA