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A new thesis on alcohol-related cognitive impairment

A new thesis on alcohol-related cognitive impairment



Theophanis Tsifis, PhD student at the Department of Clinical Geriatrics, NVS. Image: private.

In recent years, there have been major advances in defining and better understanding all types of dementia. But progress has not been as rapid when it comes to alcohol-related cognitive impairment. The main focus of my work is to characterize the clinical manifestation (structural and neuropsychological) of alcohol-related brain damage in older individuals, investigate how the effect of alcohol on cognition is influenced by specific contributing socio-economic and clinical factors, and finally evaluate the prognosis. Accuracy of the qualitative screening test (4AT) for identifying signs of cognitive impairment and delirium.

What are the main findings?

We have shown that there are specific interactions between alcohol consumption and socioeconomic criteria such as education and income that significantly influence cognitive performance on neuropsychological tests. We have observed that cognitively intact elderly individuals with high alcohol intake have specific frontal and occipital cortical thinning. In addition, we found that alcohol-related cortical thinning in the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPC) is associated with poorer episodic memory performance, suggesting that there are likely other cognitive functions that influence episodic memory performance when consuming large amounts of alcohol. In normal aging and aging. MCI. Finally, we showed that the 4AT has good diagnostic accuracy for identifying delirium in geriatric units.

How can this new knowledge contribute to improving human health?

The findings could contribute to the implementation of new models for the assessment and treatment of alcohol-related cognitive impairment in cognitive clinics and geriatric inpatient units.

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what will you do now what do you do now? Will you keep searching?

Yes, I would like to continue to combine my clinical duties with research in the field of cognition and aging.