Neighborhood socioeconomic status and segregation linked to cognitive decline

Oanh L. Meyer, Lilah Besser, Michele Tobias, Kristen M. George, Brandon Gavett, Sarah Tomaszewski Farias, Nishi Bhagat, My Le Pham, Stephanie Chrisphonte, Rachel A. Whitmer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Introduction Few longitudinal studies have examined the joint impact of neighborhood segregation and neighborhood socioeconomic status (NSES) in cognitive decline over time.

Methods This study included non-Hispanic White (NHW, n = 209) and Black participants (n = 118) whose cognition was evaluated as part of an ongoing longitudinal study. Four distinct categories of segregation and NSES were evaluated for their association with cognitive outcomes (episodic memory, semantic memory, executive function, and spatial ability) using race-specific mixed-effects models.

Results Compared to Black participants living in higher segregation-lower NSES areas, Black participants living in lower segregation-lower NSES areas or higher segregation-higher NSES areas experienced slower decline in episodic memory over time. Compared to NHW participants living in higher segregation-lower NSES areas, NHWs living in lower segregation-higher NSES areas experienced faster decline in spatial ability.

Discussion Segregation and NSES are differentially associated with cognition depending on participant race. Further research is needed to replicate study results.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere12401
Number of pages11
JournalAlzheimer’s & Dementia: Diagnosis, Assessment & Disease Monitoring
Issue number1
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 8 Feb 2023


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