Mental Decline a Risk Factor for Stroke, Study Suggests

Health News / Tips & Trends / Celebrity Health

MONDAY, Aug. 25, 2014 (HealthDay News) — Declining mental skills appear to raise a person’s odds for a stroke, a new study suggests.

Researchers analyzed data from 18 studies — most conducted in Europe or North America — and found that people with memory and thinking problems were 39 percent more likely to suffer a stroke than those with normal mental function.

When the team broadened its definition of mental decline (clinically called “cognitive impairment”), the connection to stroke got even stronger. The findings did not prove cause-and-effect, however.

“This risk increased to 64 percent when a broadly adopted definition of cognitive impairment was used,” wrote a team led by Dr. Bruce Ovbiagele, chair of the neurology department at the Medical University of South Carolina.

“Given the projected substantial rise in the number of older people around the world, prevalence rates of cognitive impairment and stroke are expected to soar…

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