Doctors Health Press ( — www.DoctorsHealthPress.com), a division of Lombardi Publishing Corporation and the publisher of various natural health newsletters, books, and reports, including the popular Doctors Health Press e-Bulletin, is weighing in on a study showing poor sleep may increase the risk of stroke in seniors.
A new study, published in the journal Stroke, is showing that lack of proper sleep for seniors may result in a hardening of the arteries in the brain, which can potentially lead to a stroke.
The study, performed by a team of researchers at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre in Toronto, Canada, looked at the autopsied brains of 315 seniors who had undergone a week of sleep monitoring before their death. Close to 30% of the studied seniors, with an average age of 90, had experienced a stroke, and just over 60% had suffered moderate to severe brain damage. Final results from the study showed those whose sleep patterns had been regularly interrupted through awakenings were 27% more likely to have the arteries in their brain harden. (Source: Lim, Andrew S.P. et al., “Sleep Fragmentation, Cerebral Arteriolosclerosis, and Brain Infarct Pathology in Community-Dwelling Older People,” Stroke, January 14, 2016; http://stroke.ahajournals.org/content/early/2016/01/14/STROKEAHA.115.011608.full.pdf+html.)
“That’s a significant risk increase,” says Adrian Newman, publisher for Doctors Health Press. “To increase the chances of having a stroke by close to 30% based on not getting proper sleep is both scary and encouraging. It’s encouraging because better sleep is something we can control, and by controlling it, we can actually save lives.”
Each time an individual awoke in the sleep study portion, a loss of oxygen to the brain was found to have occurred. The Sunnybrook study showed that waking up twice an hour reduced oxygen to the brain by up to 30%. It’s also important to note that this research was conducted independently of other factors related to stroke. Smoking, high blood pressure, and diabetes were not factored into the results.
“The study was able to show a connection between poor sleep and poor circulation of blood to the brain as risk factors for stroke, which gives us a clearer idea of what causes strokes and thus allows us to be better prepared to prevent them in the future,” Newman concludes.
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Name: Adrian Newman
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Organization: Doctors Health Press
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