Mild cognitive decline. A position statement of the Cognitive Decline Group of the European Innovation Partnership for Active and Healthy Ageing (EIPAHA)

Joao Apostolo, Carol Holland, Matthew D.L. O'Connell, Joanne Feeney, Rafael Tabares-Seisdedos, George Tadros, Elzbieta Campos, Nadine Santos, Deirdre A. Robertson, Maura Marcucci, Isabel Varela-Nieto, Benedicto Crespo-Facorro, Eduard Vieta, Esperanza Navarro-Pardo, Gabriel Selva-Vera, Vicent Balanzá-Martínez, Antonio Cano*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Introduction Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) is a term used to describe a level of decline in cognition which is seen as an intermediate stage between normal ageing and dementia, and which many consider to be a prodromal stage of neurodegeneration that may become dementia. That is, it is perceived as a high risk level of cognitive change. The increasing burden of dementia in our society, but also our increasing understanding of its risk factors and potential interventions, require diligent management of MCI in order to find strategies that produce effective prevention of dementia. Aim To update knowledge regarding mild cognitive impairment, and to bring together and appraise evidence about the main features of clinical interest: definitions, prevalence and stability, risk factors, screening, and management and intervention. Methods Literature review and consensus of expert opinion. Results and conclusion MCI describes a level of impairment in which deteriorating cognitive functions still allow for reasonable independent living, including some compensatory strategies. While there is evidence for some early risk factors, there is still a need to more precisely delineate and distinguish early manifestations of frank dementia from cognitive impairment that is less likely to progress to dementia, and furthermore to develop improved prospective evidence for positive response to intervention. An important limitation derives from the scarcity of studies that take MCI as an endpoint. Strategies for effective management suffer from the same limitation, since most studies have focused on dementia. Behavioural changes may represent the most cost-effective approach.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)83-93
Number of pages11
Early online date22 Oct 2015
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2016

Bibliographical note

© 2015, Elsevier. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International


  • cognition
  • cognitive frailty
  • mild cognitive decline
  • position statement


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