People Developing Diabetes in Middle Age More Likely to have Smaller Brains later in Life
A US study suggests that people who develop diabetes and high blood pressure in middle age are at increased risk to suffer problems with memory and thinking skills.
Along with previous study, the current one is of the view that people with diabetes may have greater risk to develop dementia. An experiment was carried out in which researchers have assessed the thinking and memory skills of more than 1,400 patients having an average age of 80 years.
The assessment found absolutely no problem in thinking or memory skills and mild memory and thinking issues. They were then made to undergo brain scans with an aim to identify markers of brain damage that can be signs of dementia.
Along with brain scans, researchers assessed medical records of patients to know whether or not they have diabetes or high blood pressure in middle age or later. It was found that 72 people developed diabetes in middle age, 142 in old age and 1,192 were not having diabetes.
In the case of high blood pressure, 449 people developed the condition in middle age, 448 in old age and 369 did not have it. When compared with people who did not have diabetes, people who got diagnosed with the condition in middle age had brain volume that was 2.9% smaller on an average.
These people were twice more likely to have thinking and memory problems. Compared to people who have not developed high blood pressure, people who have developed the condition in middle age were found to be twice as likely to have areas of brain damage.
"Overall, our findings suggest that the effects of these diseases on the brain take decades to develop and show up as brain damage and lead to symptoms that affect their memory and other thinking skills", said Dr. Roberts.
New Zealand News
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