New Evidence Hearing Aids Help Slow Cognitive Decline

19 Jul 2023 • Patients with risk factors for dementia, such as diabetes and hypertension, experienced a 48% slowing of cognitive decline after wearing a hearing aid for 3 years, results of the first randomized trial of its kind show. Results of the ACHIEVE study add to growing evidence that addressing hearing impairment may be a critically important global public health target to prevent dementia.

The findings were presented at the Alzheimer's Association International Conference (AAIC) 2023 and were simultaneously published online July 17 in The Lancet.

To provide more robust evidence of the value of hearing aids in preserving cognition, the investigators conducted the ACHIEVE study, a randomized trial that included 977 adults aged 70–84 years with untreated hearing loss who were free from substantial cognitive impairment in four communities across the US.

  • Researchers randomly assigned all participants to either a hearing intervention group or an aging health education control group.
  • The findings suggested that a hearing intervention might reduce cognitive change over 3 years in populations of older adults at increased risk for cognitive decline but not in populations at decreased risk for cognitive decline.

A follow-up study of the ACHIEVE cohort is underway to study longer-term effects of hearing intervention on cognition and other outcomes.

Source: The Lancet | Read full story

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