Sex/gender differences in cognitive trajectories vary as a function of race/ethnicity

INTRODUCTION: The present study sought to determine whether cognitive trajectories differ between men and women across and within racial/ethnic groups.
METHODS: Participants were 5258 non-Hispanic White (NHW), Black, and Hispanic men and women in the Washington/Hamilton Heights-Inwood Columbia Aging Project who were administered neuropsychological tests of memory, language, and visuospatial abilities at 18- to 24-month intervals for up to 25 years. Multiple-group latent growth curve modeling examined trajectories across sex/gender by race/ethnicity.
RESULTS: After adjusting for age and education, the largest baseline differences were between NHW men and Hispanic women on visuospatial and language, and between NHW women and Black men on memory. Memory and visuospatial decline was steeper for Black women compared with Hispanic men and NHW women, respectively.
DISCUSSION: This study takes an important first step in understanding interactions between race/ethnicity and sex/gender on cognitive trajectories by demonstrating variability in sex/gender differences across race/ethnicity.