Greater body mass index is associated with poorer cognitive functioning in male heart failure patients

Misty A.W. Hawkins, John Gunstad, Mary A. Dolansky, Joseph D. Redle, Richard Josephson, Shirley M. Moore, Joel W. Hughes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

9 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background Heart failure (HF) and obesity are associated with cognitive impairment. However, few studies have investigated the relationship between adiposity and cognitive functioning in HF for each sex, despite observed sex differences in HF prognosis. We tested the hypothesis that greater body mass index (BMI) would be associated with poorer cognitive functioning, especially in men, in sex-stratified analyses. Methods and Results Participants were 231 HF patients (34% female, 24% nonwhite, average age 68.7 ± 7.3 years). Height and weight were used to compute BMI. A neuropsychology battery tested global cognitive function, memory, attention, and executive function. Composites were created using averages of age-adjusted scaled scores. Regressions adjusting for demographic and medical factors were conducted. The sample was predominantly overweight/obese (76.2%). For men, greater BMI predicted poorer attention (ΔR2 = 0.03; β = -0.18; P =.01) and executive function (ΔR2 = 0.02; β = -0.13; P =.04); these effects were largely driven by men with severe obesity (BMI ≥40 kg/m2). BMI did not predict memory (P =.69) or global cognitive functioning (P =.08). In women, greater BMI was not associated with any cognitive variable (all P ≥.09). Discussion Higher BMI was associated with poorer attention and executive function in male HF patients, especially those with severe obesity. These patients may therefore have more difficulties with the HF treatment regimen and may have poorer outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)199-206
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Cardiac Failure
Volume20
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2014
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Body Mass Index
Heart Failure
Executive Function
Morbid Obesity
Neuropsychology
Adiposity
Sex Characteristics
Cognition
Obesity
Demography
Weights and Measures

Keywords

  • Attention
  • executive function
  • gender differences
  • obesity

Cite this

Hawkins, Misty A.W. ; Gunstad, John ; Dolansky, Mary A. ; Redle, Joseph D. ; Josephson, Richard ; Moore, Shirley M. ; Hughes, Joel W. / Greater body mass index is associated with poorer cognitive functioning in male heart failure patients. In: Journal of Cardiac Failure. 2014 ; Vol. 20, No. 3. pp. 199-206.
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Greater body mass index is associated with poorer cognitive functioning in male heart failure patients. / Hawkins, Misty A.W.; Gunstad, John; Dolansky, Mary A.; Redle, Joseph D.; Josephson, Richard; Moore, Shirley M.; Hughes, Joel W.

In: Journal of Cardiac Failure, Vol. 20, No. 3, 01.01.2014, p. 199-206.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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AU - Hawkins, Misty A.W.

AU - Gunstad, John

AU - Dolansky, Mary A.

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AU - Josephson, Richard

AU - Moore, Shirley M.

AU - Hughes, Joel W.

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N2 - Background Heart failure (HF) and obesity are associated with cognitive impairment. However, few studies have investigated the relationship between adiposity and cognitive functioning in HF for each sex, despite observed sex differences in HF prognosis. We tested the hypothesis that greater body mass index (BMI) would be associated with poorer cognitive functioning, especially in men, in sex-stratified analyses. Methods and Results Participants were 231 HF patients (34% female, 24% nonwhite, average age 68.7 ± 7.3 years). Height and weight were used to compute BMI. A neuropsychology battery tested global cognitive function, memory, attention, and executive function. Composites were created using averages of age-adjusted scaled scores. Regressions adjusting for demographic and medical factors were conducted. The sample was predominantly overweight/obese (76.2%). For men, greater BMI predicted poorer attention (ΔR2 = 0.03; β = -0.18; P =.01) and executive function (ΔR2 = 0.02; β = -0.13; P =.04); these effects were largely driven by men with severe obesity (BMI ≥40 kg/m2). BMI did not predict memory (P =.69) or global cognitive functioning (P =.08). In women, greater BMI was not associated with any cognitive variable (all P ≥.09). Discussion Higher BMI was associated with poorer attention and executive function in male HF patients, especially those with severe obesity. These patients may therefore have more difficulties with the HF treatment regimen and may have poorer outcomes.

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