The British Heart Foundation (BHF) has revealed it will be funding trials for a new treatment for a type of stroke that is linked to dementia.
It has provided an £850,000 grant for researchers at the Universities of Edinburgh, Nottingham and collaborators in a bid to develop a drug for lacunar strokes, which affect around 35,000 people in the UK annually and account for one-quarter of all strokes. In addition to this, researchers believe lacunar strokes could be an underlying cause of at least 40 per cent of dementia cases.
At present, there is no proven treatment for the condition and existing anti-stroke treatments, such as aspirin, may even have a detrimental effect.
The new trial will involve close to 200 patients being treated with either the drugs cilostazol, and isosorbide mononitrate, or both. These treatments are currently used for gina and peripheral vascular disease.
Professor Joanna Wardlaw, who will lead the research, stated: "There is a strong link between lacunar stroke and dementia. This trial is important as it’s one of the first looking into treatments of this type of stroke."
Dr Shannon Amoils, BHF senior research advisor, stated: “There are currently no proven treatments for lacunar stroke. This trial aims to lay the foundations for a larger, more definitive study.”
Last month, the Alzheimer’s Society recommended that people with dementia stay active over the winter months. It said that being active and exposed to daylight can have a number of benefits, such as maintaining regular sleeping patterns, improving memory, strengthening muscles and increasing mobility.
Find out about dementia care and support services at Barchester care homes.