Cognitive Impairment, Functional Dependency, Depression and Gait Characteristics in Elderly People

Tuesday, July 12, 2011: 10:50 AM

María de los Ángeles Villarreal Reyna, PhD1
Ana Laura Carrillo Cervantes, RN2
Marina Lilia Carrillo Mendoza, RN2
Wendy Juana María García Meza2
María Magdalena Delabra Salinas, RN1
(1)School of Nursing, Universidad Autónoma de Coahuila, Saltillo, Coah, Mexico
(2)School of Nursing, Universidad Autónoma de Coahuila, Saltillo, Mexico

Learning Objective 1: Identify prevalence of cognitive impairment, functional dependency, depression and gait characteristics in Elderly People

Learning Objective 2: Determine the relation between cognitive impairment, functional dependency, depression and gait characteristics in Elderly People

Purpose: To determine the prevalence and relation between cognitive impairment (CI), functional dependency, symptoms of depression and, gait characteristics in Elderly People (EP).

Methods: Correlational descriptive design. Sample was composed with105 EP over 60 years old or more, users of Care and Family Integration Centers (CFIC) in Saltillo, Coahuila city; selected by convenience. The sample size was determined according the analysis of the bivariate correlation, significance level of 0.5 and potency of 95%. A charter of socio-demographic characteristics was used along with 5 instruments: Minimental State Examination (MMS-E), Basic Activities of Daily Living (ADL) and Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADL) scales, Yesavage Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS), and Tinetti Assessment Tool (TAT) with alphas of .089, 0.730, 0.765, 0.720 and 0.811 respectively. 

Results: CI prevalence 24%; severe dependence on ADL 5.7% and IADL 21.9%; depression 31%. The oldest EP with lower education reported a higher grade of CI (r=0.251 p<.05; r= -.259; p<.05, respectively) and are more dependent in ADL (r=.297; p<.05) and AIVD (r=.351; p<.05).  Also, the EP with highest functional dependency in ADL and AIDL report depression (r=.309; p<.05; r=.232; p<.05, respectively). At least, 30% of the EP in the sample presented difficulties to maintain balance and their equilibrium is unstable. In addition, the 60% presented difficulties to sit down because they have problems when measuring the distance between their own body and the chair; 29% of the individuals presented difficulties to raise their right foot completely. By decreasing the balance capacity in EP, decreases their gait ability (r=.755; p<.01).

Conclusion: EP with CI presented functional dependency which yields the probability of manifest symptoms of depression. The EP participant reported difficulties in almost two gait patterns: balance and equilibrium. It is necessary to deepen in the study of the factors that affect the independence and mobility in EP.