Social engagement after stroke – is it relevant to cognitive function? A cross-sectional analysis of UK Biobank data

Drozdowska, B. A. , Celis-Morales, C. A. , Lyall, D. M. and Quinn, T. J. (2019) Social engagement after stroke – is it relevant to cognitive function? A cross-sectional analysis of UK Biobank data. AMRC Open Research, 1, 3. (doi: 10.12688/amrcopenres.12862.2)

220318.pdf - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.



Background: Findings from studies in older adult populations suggest that measures of social engagement may be associated with health outcomes, including cognitive function. Plausibly the magnitude and direction of this association may differ in stroke. The disabling nature of stroke increases the likelihood of social isolation and stroke survivors are at high risk of cognitive decline. We assessed the association between social engagement and cognitive function in a sample of stroke survivors. Methods: We included available data from stroke survivors in the UK Biobank (N=8776; age range: 40-72; 57.4% male). In a series of regression models, we assessed cross-sectional associations between proxies of social engagement (frequency of family/friend visits, satisfaction with relationships, loneliness, opportunities to confide in someone, participation in social activities) and performance on domain specific cognitive tasks: reaction time, verbal-numerical reasoning, visual memory and prospective memory. We adjusted for demographics, health-, lifestyle-, and stroke-related factors. Accounting for multiple testing, we set our significance threshold at p<0.003. Results: After adjusting for covariates, we found independent associations between faster reaction times and monthly family visits as compared to no visit (standardised beta=-0.32, 99.7% CI: -0.61 to -0.03, N=4,930); slower reaction times and religious group participation (standardised beta=0.25, 99.7% CI 0.07 to 0.44, N=4,938); and poorer performance on both verbal-numerical reasoning and prospective memory tasks with loneliness (standardised beta=-0.19, 99.7% CI: -0.34 to -0.03, N=2,074; odds ratio=0.66, 99.7% CI: 0.46 to 0.94, N=2,188; respectively). In models where all proxies of social engagement were combined, no associations remained significant. Conclusions: We found limited task-specific associations between cognitive performance and proxies of social engagement, with only loneliness related to two tasks. Further studies are necessary to confirm and improve our understanding of these relationships and investigate the potential to target psychosocial factors to support cognitive function in stroke survivors.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Celis, Dr Carlos and Drozdowska, Bogna and Quinn, Dr Terry and Lyall, Dr Donald
Creator Roles:
Drozdowska, B. A.Conceptualization, Data curation, Formal analysis, Methodology, Writing – original draft
Celis-Morales, C. A.Data curation, Methodology, Resources, Supervision, Validation, Writing – review and editing
Lyall, D. M.Methodology, Resources, Supervision, Validation, Writing – review and editing
Quinn, T. J.Conceptualization, Funding acquisition, Methodology, Supervision, Validation, Writing – review and editing
Authors: Drozdowska, B. A., Celis-Morales, C. A., Lyall, D. M., and Quinn, T. J.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Cardiovascular and Medical Sciences
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Health and Wellbeing > Public Health
Journal Name:AMRC Open Research
ISSN (Online):2517-6900
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2019 Drozdowska BA et al.
First Published:First published in AMRC Open Research 1: 3
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License
Related URLs:

University Staff: Request a correction | Enlighten Editors: Update this record

Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
172806Improving assessment, prediction and understanding of the short, medium and longer term neuropsychological consequences of strokeTerence QuinnStroke Association (STROKEAS)PPA2015/01_CSOInstitute of Cardiovascular & Medical Sciences
171459Joint Stroke Association/Chief Scientist Office Senior Clinical Lectureship - STOKE ASSOCIATION REF TSA LECT 2015/05Terence QuinnStroke Association (STROKEAS)TSA LECT 2015/05Institute of Cardiovascular & Medical Sciences