Fitness and Dementia Term Paper.docx

Fitness and Dementia Term Paper.docx - Fitness and Dementia...

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Fitness and Dementia Term Paper This study is on the correlation between developing dementia and fitness. The study was done in Sweden, with 191 female subjects aged 38 to 60, who underwent an ergometer cycling test to assess cardiovascular fitness. Essentially they rode a bike until they became fatigued and had to stop. The women were then put in 3 groups depending on the fitness level that was determined from the ergometer test, 40 were high fitness, 92 were medium, and 59 were low fitness. These groups were then followed for a 44-year period, ending in 2012. This is a cohort study, which is beneficial because cohort studies reduce bias in exposure ascertainment and provides a clear timeline for exposure and disease. However, cohort studies are expensive and time consuming and also have potential for confounding. To me, the measures of the ergometer cycling test are pretty clearly defined. The article states that “the women’s workload was measured, based on how much weight or resistance could be added to the bicycle before they became fatigued”. The only issue I have with how they define the measures is when they stated that “some of the women had to interrupt their cycling test at submaximal workload…mainly due to changes seen on an electrocardiograph or due to high blood pressure.” That sentence alone is fine but they do not say what they did with these women’s scores or how they could be confounders. If the women had to stop early due to other health complications I assume that would put them in the low fitness group and perhaps the high blood pressure is what causes dementia rather than low fitness. The measures of developing dementia however are not clear at all. They simply state that they looked at who was diagnosed versus who was not but I would think that diagnosis could vary from doctor to doctor as well as from patient to patient.
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  • Winter '17
  • Lyndia Brumback
  • Cohort study, Keith Fargo

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