"A-Fib Tied To Higher Odds For Dementia"
A common heart rhythm disorder, atrial fibrillation, may speed up mental decline in older adults, new research suggests. If you have atrial fibrillation, or A-fib, your heart beats irregularly. This means blood can pool and form clots that go to the brain, causing a stroke. The good news from this study: Blood thinners can reduce the odds for stroke and maybe delay or prevent dementia, researchers say. "Atrial fibrillation is associated with formation of clots that travel to the brain," said Sam Gandy, MD, PhD, associate director of the Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. It’s been thought that blood thinners effectively prevent this, he said. "But with more refined neuropsychological exams and higher resolution scans we now see that while we are preventing major strokes, we apparently are not preventing formation of micro-clots that do more damage than previously realized," Gandy said. "This is being recognized and documented more and more, as in the current study."
- Samuel Gandy, MD, PhD, Professor, Neurology, Psychiatry, Associate Director, Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Director, The Mount Sinai Center for Cognitive Health and NFL Neurological Care