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New predictor of heart attack or stroke
Date:12/19/2011

e again at age 55, then followed the patients until the occurrence of a first heart attack or stroke, death or age 95.

Men who developed high blood pressure in middle age or who started out with high blood pressure had a 70 percent risk of having a heart attack or stroke compared to a 41 percent risk for men who maintained low blood pressure or whose blood pressure decreased during the time period. Women who developed high blood pressure had almost a 50 percent risk of a heart attack or stroke compared to a 22 percent risk for those who kept their blood pressure low or saw a decrease.

Men generally have a 55 percent risk of cardiovascular disease in their lifetimes; women have a 40 percent risk.

"Our research suggests people can take preventive steps to keep their blood pressure low early on to reduce their chances of a heart attack or stroke," said Donald M. Lloyd-Jones, MD, study co-author, chair of preventive medicine at Northwestern's Feinberg School and a cardiologist at Northwestern Memorial Hospital. "Maintaining a healthy diet, combined with exercise and weight control, can help reduce blood pressure levels and, consequently, your risk for cardiovascular disease later in life."


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Contact: Marla Paul
marla-Paul@northwestern.edu
312-503-8928
Northwestern University
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

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