Uncontrolled high blood pressure can cause heart attack, stroke, heart failure and kindney failure. New research shows that it is also linked to memory problems and cognitive impairment. A study in the journal “Neurology” is the largest of its kind to look at the connection between memory problems and high blood pressure.
People with high diastolic blood pressure are more likely than those with normal readings to have memory issues. For every 10 point increase in the diastolic reading, there was a 7 percent increase in the odds of a person having congnitive problems. The results remained unchanged with adjustment for other factors in cognitive function such as smoking, exercise, education, cholesterol levels and diabetes.
Dr. Walter Koroshetz of the National Institute of Neurological Disorders which funded the study states, “These latest data suggest that higher blood pressure may be a risk factor for cognitive decline, but further studies will be necessary to understand the cause-effect relationship.”
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