Posted on Mar 14, 2011, 6 a.m.
Middle-age men and women who have high cholesterol and high blood pressure may be at an increased risk of developing early cognitive and memory problems.
Middle-age men and women who have cardiovascular issues, such as high cholesterol and high blood pressure, may not only be at risk for heart disease, but for an increased risk of developing early cognitive and memory problems as well. Sara Kaffashian, from INSERM (France), and colleagues studied 3,486 men and 1,341 women, average age 55 years, conducting cognitive tests three times over 10 years to measure reasoning, memory, fluency and vocabulary skills Participants were assigned a predicative risk score that reflected the subject’s 10-year risk of a cardiovascular event. The researchers found that the participants with a higher cardiovascular risk were more likely to have lower cognitive function and a faster rate of overall cognitive decline, as compared to those with the lowest risk of heart disease. A 10% higher cardiovascular risk was associated with poorer cognitive test scores in all areas except reasoning for men and fluency for women. As well, higher cardiovascular risk associated with a 10-year faster rate of overall cognitive decline in both men and women compared to those with lower cardiovascular risk.
Sara Kaffashian, Aline Dugravot, Hermann Nabi, G. David Batty, Eric Brunner, Mika Kivimaki, Archana Singh-Manoux. “Predictive Utility of the Framingham General Cardiovascular Disease Risk Profile for Cognitive Function: Evidence from the Whitehall Study” (Abstract # IN 1-1.010). Presen