Vascular risk factors, alcohol intake, and cognitive decline

  • F. Panza
  • C. Capurso
  • A. D’Introno
  • A. M. Colacicco
  • V. Frisardi
  • A. Santamato
  • M. Ranieri
  • P. Fiore
  • G. Vendemiale
  • D. Seripa
  • A. Pilotto
  • A. Capurso
  • V. Solfrizzi
Clinical Neurosciences


Since the therapeutic options currently available have demonstrated limited efficacy, the search for preventive strategies for cognitive decline and dementia is mandatory. A possible role of vascular and lifestyle-related factors was recently proposed for age-related changes of cognitive function, predementia syndromes, and cognitive decline of degenerative (Alzheimer’s disease, AD) or vascular origin. At present, cumulative evidence suggested that vascular risk factors may be important in the development of mild cognitive impairment (MCI), dementia, and AD. Among vascular-related factors, metabolic syndrome has been associated with the risk of cognitive decline and overall dementia. Moderate alcohol drinking has been proposed as a protective factor against MCI and dementia in several longitudinal studies, but contrasting findings also exist. However, in most cases, these were only observational studies, and results are awaited from large multicenter randomized clinical trials in older persons. At present, vascular risk factor management, lifestyle changes, and drugs could be employed together to delay the onset of dementia syndromes.

Key words

Alcohol metabolic syndrome vascular risk factors predementia syndromes dementia Alzheimer’s disease vascular dementia mild cognitive impairment 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag France and Serdi Éditions 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • F. Panza
    • 1
  • C. Capurso
    • 2
  • A. D’Introno
    • 1
  • A. M. Colacicco
    • 1
  • V. Frisardi
    • 1
  • A. Santamato
    • 3
  • M. Ranieri
    • 4
  • P. Fiore
    • 3
  • G. Vendemiale
    • 2
  • D. Seripa
    • 5
  • A. Pilotto
    • 6
  • A. Capurso
    • 1
  • V. Solfrizzi
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Geriatrics, Center for Aging Brain, Memory UnitUniversity of Bari, PoliclinicoBariItaly
  2. 2.Department of GeriatricsUniversity of FoggiaFoggiaItaly
  3. 3.Department of Physical Medicine and RehabilitationUniversity of FoggiaFoggiaItaly
  4. 4.Department of Neurological and Psychiatric SciencesUniversity of BariBariItaly
  5. 5.Laboratory of Gerontology & Geriatrics, Department of ResearchIRCCS Casa Sollievo della SofferenzaSan Giovanni Rotondo (FG)Italy
  6. 6.Geriatric Unit, Department of Medical SciencesIRCCS Casa Sollievo della SofferenzaSan Giovanni Rotondo (FG)Italy

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