Objectives: We described the duration from symptom debut to assessment at specialist healthcare outpatient clinics for dementia in Norway and explored whether educational level was associated with time from symptom debut to dementia assessment. Methods: The study comprised 835 persons from a register for individuals with cognitive symptoms (NorCog). The outcome variable was time in months from symptom debut to assessment. The main independent variable was the number of years of education. Also age, gender, marital status, cognitive function, neuropsychiatric symptoms, assistance and location were assessed. Results: In an adjusted linear mixed model, a higher educational level was associated with a longer duration from symptom debut to assessment, where 5 additional years of education increased the time from symptom debut to consultation by 10%. Conclusion: The findings may perhaps be explained by the hypothesis that highly educated people may be able to compensate better for cognitive impairment, which is in line with a hypothesis of cognitive reserve.
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