A study published in JAMA Network Open on Sept. 5, 2023, found that older adults who take medications to lower their blood pressure may reduce their risk of dementia. The report combined data from 17 separate observational studies, which included over 34,000 adults aged 60 to 110. The average age of the participants was 72, and they were followed for an average of four years.
The findings of the study showed that people with untreated high blood pressure were 42% more likely to develop dementia compared to healthy older adults. Those who were untreated had a 26% greater risk than people with treated high blood pressure. Additionally, when researchers compared people with treated high blood pressure to healthy older adults without high blood pressure, they found no meaningful difference in dementia risk between the two groups. These findings reinforce the connection between heart and brain health and suggest that treating high blood pressure in later life may benefit both organs.
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