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Failing memory 'may be stroke indicator'

Failing memory 'may be stroke indicator'
4th February 2010

Scientists in Sweden have concluded that people who experience memory loss or a decline in thinking abilities may be at a higher risk of stroke despite a diagnosis of dementia.

Around 930 men in the country around the age of 70 without a history of stroke participated in three mental tests, with the research making the print issue of Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology.

Bernice Wiberg, a doctor with Uppsala University, explained that one of the many holy grails in the world of medicine is discovering a viable stroke indicator to ensure that prevention is available as well as a cure or, at the very least, a responsive treatment.

"Our results support the idea that cognitive decline regardless of whether a person has dementia may predict risk of stroke", she continued.

Dr Wiberg added that the Trial Making Test B is simple and cost-effective and with more research, it "could be used to identify those persons for whom stroke prevention measures should be considered".

It follows comments from Professor Graham MacGregor, the chairman of Consensus Action on Salt & Health, who underlined how many people do not take the amount of salt they eat into account during their day-to-day diet and as such could be dramatically heightening their risk of having a stroke.

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