Utility of the LIBRA Index in Relation to Cognitive Functioning in a Clinical Health Seeking Sample.J Alzheimers Dis. 2018; 62(1):373-384.JA
Dementia prevalence is expected to increase substantially over the next few decades. Since there is currently no cure for dementia available, there is an urgent need for the early identification of individuals at high risk for dementia, so that primary and secondary prevention strategies can be implemented. Recently, the LIfestyle for BRAin health (LIBRA) index was developed as a new dementia risk algorithm. It specifically focuses on modifiable risk and protective factors that can be targeted in midlife.
The objective of this study was to evaluate the LIBRA index in relation to markers of cognitive functioning in a clinical, health-seeking sample of community-based older adults.
484 participants (mean age 62.7 years) were recruited from the Healthy Brain Ageing Clinic at the Brain and Mind Centre, Sydney. Participants underwent comprehensive clinical and neuropsychological assessment and completed a self-report survey pack. Participants were rated via consensus as having either subjective cognitive complaints (SCC) or meeting criteria for mild cognitive impairment (MCI). The LIBRA score was calculated based on 11 available risk and protective factors.
65.4% of the sample met criteria for MCI. People with MCI showed a significantly higher LIBRA score compared to people with SCC. Furthermore, multiple cognitive domains, in particular executive functioning, were associated with a higher LIBRA score, with stronger correlations in people with MCI.
The LIBRA index might be a useful tool to determine lifestyle-attributable risk of cognitive decline in an older health-seeking population, including people with MCI.