A report in the current issue of the Archives of Neurology suggests yet again that cholesterol has some link with Alzheimer's disease. Kristine Yaffe and colleagues at the University of California, San Francisco, and elsewhere, found evidence that LDL cholesterol (the "bad" kind), as well as total cholesterol, was associated with worse cognitive scores and a greater likelihood of cognitive impairment in a study of 1,037 postmenopausal women. Conversely, among women who reported using cholesterol-lowering drugs called statins during the final month of the four-year study, there was a trend in the data toward better results on the cognitive tests. This difference appeared to be independent of total cholesterol level. The study's data are difficult to interpret, however, because the women received no cognitive tests at baseline.—Hakon Heimer
See related ARF news item
- Yaffe K, Barrett-Connor E, Lin F, Grady D. Serum lipoprotein levels, statin use, and cognitive function in older women. Arch Neurol. 2002 Mar;59(3):378-84. PubMed.