Heart disease and dementia could be linked

Heart disease and dementia could be linked zoom

A recent study has found that older women suffering with heart disease are more likely to develop Alzheimer’s and memory and cognitive issues than those who do not have the condition. The study, entitled ‘Cardiovascular Disease and Cognitive Decline in Postmenopausal Women: Results From the Women’s Health Initiative Memory Study’, was published online on 18th December and has found that the two conditions could be quite closely linked.

The study notes the importance of the findings as the effects of heart disease can be reversed whereas, as yet, the progression of cognitive problems and Alzheimer’s cannot. The study will be of particular interest to residents at our residential Abingdon care home, as many are living with the cognitive condition. While Bridge House provides a fulfilling and active lifestyle for its residents, research into dementia and other such conditions is still an important factor for them, residents’ family members and society as a whole, as the world gets ever closer to finding a potential cure.

While doctors had already suspected a link between heart conditions and brain function exists, as exercise is already proven to benefit cognitive function and dementia, this recent study looks to prove such theories. The study took into account data collated from the experiences of over 6,000 women between the ages of 65 and 79 over a period of eight years, and found that women who reported having heart disease were 29 percent more likely than those without to develop cognitive issues.

The study is said to have provided the medical industry with new evidence covering a broad spectrum that includes a number of different types of heart disease and focuses specifically on postmenopausal women. The research, which was conducted by lead author Dr. Bernhard Haring alongside 10 other researchers, also found that women who had suffered a heart attack were the most likely to develop thinking and memory issues. This was found through a test conducted on the women surveyed, in which their brain function was tested periodically every year over the course of the study. The full report can be read through on the American Heart Association website.


Image Credit: Pedro Ribeiro Simões (flickr.com)