People taking blood pressure medication may be less likely to develop dementia

People taking blood pressure medication may be less likely to develop dementia
  • Researchers analyzed data from a clinical trial involving more than 28,000 people to determine whether people who took blood pressure medication had a lower risk of dementia than those who didn't.
  • About 1 in 10 people over the age of 65 have dementia.
  • blood pressure medications help relieve narrowing or blockage of important arteries in the body.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, high blood pressure (hypertension) is a significant risk factor for dementia, especially for people with uncontrolled blood pressure in middle age.

But can treating high blood pressure in later life reduce this risk?

Study looked at the effects of blood pressure medication on dementia risk
“We already know that high blood pressure, especially in middle age (between the ages of 40 and 65), increases the risk of developing dementia later in life,” says Healthline, Global Brain Health Initiative.

Dr. Peters, the lead author of the study, noted that there is "some degree of uncertainty" about whether lowering blood pressure in older people reduces the risk of dementia. The team decided to investigate whether people taking antihypertensive medications (antihypertensive medications) had a lower risk of developing dementia than those receiving matched placebo/dummy treatments.

"We combined data from five large clinical trials on blood pressure lowering in older adults," she said.

Treating hypertension associated with reduced risk
For this study, researchers performed a meta-analysis of data from five studies that included information from more than 28,000 people with a median age of 69 years and a history of hypertension in 20 countries. Follow-up of this population lasted an average of 4 years.

They found that people whose blood pressure was sustainedly lowered by medication had a 13% lower risk of developing dementia.

"We found that treatment had a significant effect in reducing the likelihood of dementia," Peters said in a statement. , indicating that there is a 'roughly linear relationship' between lower blood pressure and lower dementia risk.

"This is the strongest evidence to date that lowering blood pressure in older people reduces the risk of dementia," she said.

How is blood pressure associated with dementia risk?
Dr. Bibti Mishra, chief of neurology at Long Island Jewish Forest Hills in Queens, part of Northwell Health in New York, says that blood pressure can lead to the development of conditions that constrict blood in three or four ways. It has long been recognized as one of the major risk factors. A stream or block called lipohyalinosis.

“It is a term that describes the deposition of a mixture of fat (lipo) and protein (hyaline) on the walls of small and medium-sized arterioles (small arteries).

"This process can result in multiple tiny lines called lacunar striatum," Mishra said.

"When enough arterioles are blocked, the reduced blood supply to the brain disrupts global brain network function and produces the signs and symptoms of dementia," he continued.

Many safe drug treatment options available
“Each drug has a different safety profile,” said Supreeti Behuria, director of nuclear cardiology at Staten Island University Hospital in New York. He said that there are many options for first-line drugs, and that it is important for each person to work with their doctor to find the safest and most effective drug.

Dr. Befria emphasized that controlling high blood pressure "reliably" reduces the risk of developing related disorders. ) was shown to reduce the relative risk of major cardiovascular events by an average of 10% at four years of follow-up," she said.

Behuria added that keeping blood pressure "on target" also reduces the risk of stroke and kidney disease.

Lifestyle changes can help
Elizabeth H. Dineen, DO, a cardiologist at UCI Health's Susan Samueli Integrative Institute in Orange County, California, emphasized that lifestyle changes can significantly lower blood pressure.

"Lifestyle changes have been shown to lower blood pressure by at least a few mmHg," she said.

“If overweight/obese, lose weight, increase physical activity, reduce dietary salt intake, focus on DASH diet (high fruits and vegetables, high potassium, low salt), limit alcohol consumption. Such as to do,' ” continued Dr. Dineen.

Age is still the top risk factor for dementia and Alzheimer’s disease
"Age is the biggest risk factor for Alzheimer's disease," said Betsy Mills, Ph.D., Associate Director of Aging and Alzheimer's Prevention at the Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation.
According to Dr. Mills, 1 in 10 people over the age of 65 have Alzheimer's disease.

"This increases to about one-third her over her eighties," she said. "Apart from age, risk for dementia stems from genetics (ApoE4 gene) and environmental/lifestyle factors."/or Alzheimer's disease. "It seems to be greatest for people who have had .

The bottom line
Researchers analyzed data from clinical trials involving more than 28,000 people to see if people who took blood pressure medication had a lower risk of dementia than those who didn't.

Experts say there are many safe drugs to treat blood pressure, but lifestyle changes can make a big difference.

They also said those at greatest risk were those who developed diabetes or cardiovascular disease in middle age.

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