Search JRPMS

JRPMS Vol 4, No 4, December 2020, p.113-124

doi: 10.22540/JRPMS-04-113


Mini Review

Cognitive frailty: a brief review

Evangelia Petridou1,2

  1. Postgraduate Program “Metabolic Bones Diseases”, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Medical School, Athens, Greece
  2. “Korgialenio-Benakio” General Hospital, Ampelokipoi, Athens, Greece

Keywords: Cognition, Cognitive Frailty, Frailty Syndrome


Frailty syndrome and cognitive decline, conditions linked with aging, jeopardize health status and promote an individual’s dependence on daily living activities. Various models include cognition in the assessment of frailty, but recently a new term has been proposed, called “Cognitive Frailty’’, originally presented as a probable outcome of frailty, but later it has been proposed to be an early sign of the syndrome. Cognitive frailty encompasses both the physical and the cognitive domain, explored as a unique entity, and includes two subtypes, the reversible and the potentially reversible cognitive frailty. Most studies examine cognition as another domain of frailty, using different methods for the assessment of both frailty and the status of cognition. In the present article, various definitions of the frailty syndrome and cognitive frailty as well as screening tools are reviewed. The link between cognitive impairment and frailty, and the common pathophysiological mechanisms such as neuropathological, vascular and metabolic factors, inflammation, hormones and nutrition are explored. Finally, this review presents the effects of multi-domain and single domain interventions, conducted in physical and/or cognitively frail populations that may be applied to the prevention and management of cognitive frailty.