Cognitive medicine - a new approach in health care science

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Background: The challenges of today's society call for more knowledge about how to maintain all aspects of cognitive health, such as speed/attention, memory/learning, visuospatial ability, language, executive capacity and social cognition during the life course. Main text: Medical advances have improved treatments of numerous diseases, but the cognitive implications have not been sufficiently addressed. Disability induced by cognitive dysfunction is also a major issue in groups of patients not suffering from Alzheimer's disease or related disorders. Recent studies indicate that several negative lifestyle factors can contribute to the development of cognitive impairment, but intervention and prevention strategies have not been implemented. Disability due to cognitive failure among the workforce has become a major challenge. Globally, the changing aging pyramid results in increased prevalence of cognitive disorders, and the diversity of cultures influences the expression, manifestation and consequences of cognitive dysfunction. Conclusions: Major tasks in the field of cognitive medicine are basic neuroscience research to uncover diverse disease mechanisms, determinations of the prevalence of cognitive dysfunction, health-economical evaluations, and intervention studies. Raising awareness for cognitive medicine as a clinical topic would also highlight the importance of specialized health care units for an integrative approach to the treatment of cognitive dysfunctions.


  • Anders Wallin
  • Petronella Kettunen
  • Per M. Johansson
  • Ingibjörg H. Jonsdottir
  • Christer Nilsson
  • Michael Nilsson
  • Marie Eckerström
  • Arto Nordlund
  • Lars Nyberg
  • Katharina S. Sunnerhagen
  • Johan Svensson
  • Beata Terzis
  • Lars Olof Wahlund
  • H. Georg Kuhn
External organisations
  • Sahlgrenska Academy
  • University of Oxford
  • Västra Götalandsregionen
  • University of Gothenburg
  • Skåne University Hospital
  • Hunter Medical Research Institute, Australia
  • Umeå University
  • Skaraborg Hospital
  • Frösunda Omsorg AB
  • Karolinska Institutet
  • Charité Universitätsmedizin Berlin
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Gerontology, specializing in Medical and Health Sciences


  • Classification of diseases, Disability, Executive control, Learning and memory, Mental functions, Neurocognitive disorders, Rehabilitation, Societal challenge, Stress and environment
Original languageEnglish
Article number42
JournalBMC Psychiatry
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Feb 8
Publication categoryResearch