Cognitive function in men with non-motor features of Parkinson's disease

Mario H. Flores-Torres, Katherine C. Hughes, Samantha Molsberry, Xiang Gao, Jae H. Kang, Michael A. Schwarzschild, Alberto Ascherio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Objective Subtle cognitive deficits can occur during the prodromal phase of Parkinson's disease (PD), commonly in conjunction with hyposmia. However, little is known about the association between cognitive function and other features suggestive of prodromal PD. We evaluated the association of non-motor prodromal PD features, including hyposmia, constipation and probable REM sleep behaviour disorder (pRBD), with objective measures of cognitive function and self-reported cognitive decline. Methods The study population comprised 804 men who responded to a telephone cognitive interview in 2016-2017. Participants included 680 individuals with hyposmia, of whom 45 had confirmed PD, and 124 men without hyposmia. Among these men, we evaluated objective cognitive function and subjective cognitive decline to determine whether the presence of non-motor features of prodromal PD was associated with cognitive functioning. Analyses were adjusted for age, physical activity, body mass index, smoking status and coffee consumption. Results Individuals with non-motor features of prodromal PD had worse objective and subjective cognitive performance relative to men without non-motor features. Cognitive impairment was particularly prevalent among individuals with concurrent hyposmia, pRBD and constipation (multivariate-adjusted OR=3.80; 95% CI 1.52 to 9.47 for objective poor cognitive function; OR=8.71; 95% CI 3.18 to 23.83 for subjective cognitive decline). As expected, both objective (OR=7.91) and subjective (OR=17.42) cognitive impairment were also more common among men with confirmed PD. Conclusions Our study suggests that cognition is commonly affected in individuals with non-motor prodromal PD features, particularly when multiple of these features are present.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere000112
JournalBMJ Neurology Open
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jun 21 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neurology


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