Ray Urbina1, Anthony Campitelli1, Megan Jones1, Jordan Glenn2, Kelsey Byrk2, Sally Paulson3, & Michelle Gray1

1University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, Arkansas; 2Neurotrack Technologies, Inc, Redwood City, California; 3St. Elizabeth Healthcare, Edgewood, Kentucky

Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is the most common cause of dementia and is often recognized as Alzheimer’s dementia. Dementia is main cause of disability in older adults and eventually leads to the need of assistance when performing activities of daily living. Addressing modifiable risk factors of AD might prevent or delay up to 40% of dementia cases. Health coaching is known to improve health overtime with individuals with AD in older adults. An intervention for middle aged to older adults at risk for AD that focuses on improving health through modifiable risk factors is needed. PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to determine if a 2-year health coaching and health education interventions improves cognitive scores in individuals at risk for AD between 45 and 75 years of age. METHODS: Adults between the ages of 45 and 75 (n=189) were randomly assigned to a Health Coaching (HC) or Health Education (HE) group. HC met with a health coach once every 4-6 week and HE received biweekly educational emails addressing AD risk factors. Each participant was tested at 4 time points: 0 (baseline), 4, 12, and 24 months. The Repeatable Battery for the Assessment of Neuropsychological Status (RBANS) was used as a measure of cognition. RBANS includes 12 subtests (list learning, story memory, figure copy, line orientation, semantic fluency, picture naming, coding, digit span, list recall, story recall, figure recall, and list recognition). To determine significant differences in means between time points for each group a mixed factorial ANOVA (α = .05) was used. RESULTS: Both interventions a significant main effect for time after 2 years of participation. HC had significant improvements in List learning (<.001), Figure Copy (<.001), Semantic Fluency (p =.036), Coding (p<.001), List Recall (p <.001), and Figure Recall (p = .011). HE had significant improvements in List Learning (p <.001), Figure Copy (p <.001), Coding (p <.001), List Recall (p <.001), Story Recall (p <.001), and List Recognition (p=.001). There was no significant main effect between groups. CONCLUSION: HC and HE groups had significant improvements in multiple RBANS subtests after participating in the intervention for 2 years. These results show that addressing AD risk factors helps improve cognitive performance in middle aged to older adults.

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