Cognitive impairment and cardiovascular medication use: Results from wave 1 of The Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing.

AIM: To explore the association between cardiovascular medication use and cognitive impairment in adults aged 50 years and over.

METHOD: This cross-sectional linked database study involved secondary quantitative analysis of 1903 participants from wave 1 of the Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing with available pharmacy claims data. Cognitive impairment was assessed using a cut-off of ≤23 on the Montreal Cognitive Assessment. Cardiovascular medication use was calculated using the proportion of days covered for antihypertensive, antithrombotic, and lipid-modifying medications. For each class of cardiovascular medication, participants were categorized as belonging to one of three medication use groups: (1) not dispensed any medications (reference); (2) poor adherence (proportion of days covered

RESULTS: Controlling for demographic and health variables, there was no evidence of an independent association between impaired cognitive function and use of antihypertensives [good adherence OR (95% CI): 1.16 (0.88, 1.52), poor adherence OR (95% CI): 1.39 (0.95, 2.04)]; antithrombotics [good adherence OR (95% CI): 1.26 (0.93, 1.70), poor adherence OR 95% CI): 1.13 (0.80, 1.59)]; or lipid-modifying agents [good adherence OR (95% CI): 0.95 (0.71, 1.25), poor adherence OR (95% CI): 0.88 (0.64, 1.22)].

CONCLUSION: We found no evidence of an association between cardiovascular medication use and cognitive function. Future studies should investigate the prospective associations between cognition and use of cardiovascular medications using longitudinal data.