Kidney decline correlated to cognitive failure, study says

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As a person's kidneys fail, so do his or her ability to reason and retain verbal memory, investigators have found.

In the first study to look at cognitive function and impaired renal function, researchers at Temple University found the rate of cognitive decline was associated with deterioration in kidney function. The five-year longitudinal study was done by looking at 590 people with a mean age of 62 years.

It means that healthcare providers must remain vigilant on diagnosis and management of chronic kidney disease, said Adam Davey, Ph.D., associate professor of public health in Temple's College of Health Professions and Social Work.

"That is something that needs to be managed, just like you would manage hypertension,” he said.

Results were published Nov. 18 in Nephrology, Dialysis and Transplantation.

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