Subjective cognitive complaints at menopause associated with declines in performance of verbal memory and attentional processes

M. Schaafsma*, J. Homewood, A. Taylor

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    38 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    BackgroundSubjective cognitive complaints are commonly reported during the menopause transition. Whether they are indicative of actual cognitive impairment is unknown. ObjectivesTo assess subjective attention and memory complaints in a general population sample across the stages of menopause; to assess relationships between subjective complaints and objective measures of cognitive performance; to examine potential menopause-related, hormonal, psychosocial and cognitive predictors of subjective complaints. MethodsMultivariate and univariate analyses of cross-sectional data from 120 pre-, peri- and postmenopausal women. ResultsAttention problems were more evident in the perimenopausal and hormone therapy groups. Subjective cognitive problems were associated with declines in verbal memory, and with declining performance on reaction time measures of attention, with small-to-medium effect sizes. Predictors of subjective complaints included menopause-related symptoms, psychosocial variables, psychological symptoms and objective cognitive performance. ConclusionA link has been demonstrated between the subjective and objective aspects of cognitive function in association with the menopausal transition. It is suggested that greater recognition be given to cognitive symptoms as forming part of the constellation of menopause-related symptoms.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)84-98
    Number of pages15
    JournalClimacteric
    Volume13
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2010

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