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Date of Award

Fall 11-8-2019

Degree Type

Dissertation (On-Campus Access Only)

Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)

Committee Chair

Michael Daniel, PsyD


Objective: The goal of this research was to determine the influence of vascular burden on both neurocognitive and instrumental functioning in individuals with Parkinson’s disease.

Methods: Archival data for 418 participants from the National Alzheimer’s Coordinating Center Uniform Data Set were used. Controlling for demographic and disease associated variables, a series of hierarchical multiple regressions was run using neuropsychological tests scores and a measure of instrumental daily functioning as outcome (dependent) variables. An index of vascular burden was the predictor (independent) variable.

Results: Participants’ mean age and education were 69.72 (SD = 8.55) and 15.74 (SD = 3.7) years, respectively. 73.7% of the sample was male and 93.8% was White. While an index of vascular burden had statistically significant associations with a measure of functional activities and a test of word retrieval, it accounted for less than 2% of the variance in each. Regression analyses were not statistically significant for the remaining 8 neuropsychological measures.

Conclusion: No clinically significant association between vascular burden and either neuropsychological test performance or instrumental functioning was found.

Available for download on Saturday, November 20, 2021