This Is the Relation Between Heart Problems and Cognitive Decline

Adults that have clogged arteries that carry the blood to the heart can be prone to a cognitive decline, as a new study shows. It is true, even in a person has suffered from angina or a heart attack.

The study took about 12 years, and researchers studied 7,888 adults. They started when they were 62 years old. In the beginning, none of them had a history with strokes, heart attacks, angina, or even dementia. However, at the end of the study, they calculated that 480 people (that is over 5.6% of the participants) had a heart attack of developed angina.

Before this happened, the patients had annual rates of cognitive decline, which were similar to those patients who did not have angina or a heart attack. More time has passed after angina or the heart attack, and patients experienced a fast cognitive decline than those participants who did not present this kind of issues. They also had problems with their verbal skills, the word fluency, and they could not tell the time either.

If we are to take into account all the factors, a bit of acceleration in the cognitive decline could mean problems in the everyday life; some of the patients might need institutional care.

It is advisable that patients who have suffered from a cardiovascular event should monitor their cognitive functions, but not only right after the event. They should do it frequently after the event.

About the study

During this study, the researchers have studied the cognitive function of the participants in 8 waves, in 12 years.

In order to test the verbal memory of the participants, they asked them to remember ten words that are not related to each other. They also asked the participants to name as many animals as they can in one minute. From this, they got to test the semantic fluency. Then, they asked the participants questions with regards to the date, month, and year, also, the day of the week, too.


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Meagan Kozlovs

About the Author: Meagan Kozlovs

Meagan Kozlovs is a reporter for Debate Report. She’s worked and interned at Global News Toronto  and CHECX. Megan is based in Toronto and covers issues affecting her city. In addition to her severe milk shake addiction, she’s a Netflix enthusiast, a red wine drinker, and a voracious reader.

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