People With Dementia At Greater Heart Attack Risk
A new study from Japan has found that elderly people who are suffering from “cognitive impairment” (such as dementia) suffer more serious outcomes from heart attacks compared with people who are not suffering from such diseases. The study, Medical News reports, considered 136 patients who were aged 65 years or over with heart failure.
These patients were admitted to the Kameda Medical Centre (in Japan). From these subjects, the researchers discovered that people with cognitive impairment had around an eight-times greater risk of all-cause death and heart failure readmission compared with those who were not suffering from neurodegenerative conditions.
One reason is because heart failure patients, with cognitive impairment, often become worse, over time, at adhering to medications. Lead scientist Hiroshi Saito, a physiotherapist at Kameda Medical Centre, is quoted by Zenopa as saying: “Clinicians need to be more aware of the cognitive status of their heart failure patients and families can play an important role in ensuring that patients take their medication, get some exercise and eat well.”
The findings of the study are being presented at Heart Failure 2015. The study is only based on a small sample of people from a specific area; nonetheless the results are of sufficient interest to trigger larger, follow-up studies.