Heart disease and stroke markers predict dementia

Heart disease and stroke markers predict dementia

If you are running risk factors for heart disease (as most of us are in NZ given it is the #1 killer), then you are also at higher risk for brain degradation and dementia.

“For most heart attack victims, diet alone would work if we advocated it, but we don’t”
Dr. William P. Castelli, Director of the 1984 Framingham Heart Study, the longest running clinical study in medical history.

“Cardiovascular risk scores may have an advantage over the dementia risk score for use in prevention and for targeting changeable risk factors since they are already used by many physicians”
Sara Kaffashian, PhD, of the French National Institute of Health and Medical Research in Paris.

What else has recently shown up from this incredibly large and long-term research?

  • Cognitive decline could be predicted better by Framingham cardiovascular risk scores than a specific dementia risk score
  • Standard risk prediction tools for heart disease and stroke are better at predicting declining mental powers than a specific dementia risk score
  • Higher heart risks on the widely used Framingham cardiovascular disease and stroke scores were strongly associated with declines on four out of five cognitive tests
  • On the other hand, higher risk on the recently proposed Cardiovascular Risk Factors, Aging and Dementia (CAIDE) score was less strongly associated with declines and only on three of the five tests

Study by Kaffashian S, et al “Predicting cognitive decline: A dementia risk score vs. the Framingham vascular risk scores” as published in Neurology April 2, 2013; 80: 1300–1306.  Sara Kaffashian, PhD, of the French National Institute of Health and Medical Research in Paris, and colleagues looked at 7,830 participants in the Whitehall II study, who had an average age of 55 when they entered the longitudinal British cohort.  They compared the performance of the CAIDE test with the Framingham cardiovascular tool in 4,374 participants who were free of cardiovascular disease, and 5,157 people free of strokes and transient ischemic attacks.  As reported by MedPage Today on April 01, 2013.


 

Posted: Thursday 25 April 2013

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