Memory lapses among highly educated may signal higher stroke risk

December 11, 2014
Science Daily/American Heart Association
People with a high level of education who complain about memory lapses have a higher risk of stroke. Researchers suggest such people should be considered for screening for stroke risk.

"Studies have shown how stroke causes memory complaints," said Arfan Ikram, M.D., associate professor of neuroepidemiology at Erasmus University Rotterdam in The Netherlands. "Given the shared underlying vascular pathology, we posed the reverse question: 'Do memory complaints indicate an increased risk of strokes?'"

"Given the role of education in revealing subjective memory complaints, we investigated the same association but in three separate groups: low education, medium education and high education," Ikram said. "We found that the association of memory complaints with stroke was strongest among people with the highest education. If in future research we can confirm this, then I would like to assess whether people who complain about changes in their memory should be considered primary targets for further risk assessment and prevention of stroke."

Researchers categorized level of education into three groups: low education -- primary education only; intermediate education -- primary education plus some higher education, lower vocational education, intermediate vocational education, or general secondary education; and high education -- higher vocational education or university training.
Science Daily/SOURCE :http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/12/141211162455.htm

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