Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

Don't Exclude Mentally Impaired from Exercise

Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

Don't Exclude Mentally Impaired from Exercise

Article excerpt

CARMEL, CALIF. -- Cognitively impaired older adults who take part in exercise rehabilitation programs have similar strength and endurance outcomes as cognitively intact peers, results from a large meta-analysis showed.

The finding suggests that cognitively impaired older adults should not be excluded from rehabilitation programs, Kyle E. Johnson reported at the Western regional meeting of the American Federation for Medical Research.

"It's a fallacy that cognitively impaired older adults are unable to follow instructions and that they will not benefit from physical therapy," said Mr. Johnson, who is a second-year medical student at the University of Colorado, Denver.

He and his associate, Patricia C. Heyn, Ph.D., of the university's division of geriatric medicine, searched electronic and printed databases for randomized, controlled trials that included physical rehabilitation outcomes of cognitively impaired older adults (defined as those with a Mini-Mental State Examination score of less than 24) and cognitively intact older adults (defined as those with an MMSE score of 24 or higher).

Of the more than 500 articles reviewed, 41 met inclusion criteria. Of these, 21 trials involved 1,411 older adults with cognitive impairment and 20 trials involved 1,565 older adults who were cognitively intact. …

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