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Stroke Archive

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Advice about daily aspirin

Published July 1, 2021
The heart-protecting benefits of a daily low-dose aspirin have to be weighed against the risk of bleeding, a common side effect that is usually minor but sometimes serious. The calculation depends on age and whether a person has cardiovascular disease, diabetes, or a condition that raises risk of bleeding.

Do I need to take my blood pressure in both arms?

Published July 1, 2021
Taking blood pressure readings in both arms can help reveal potential heart risks.

Is a "normal" blood pressure reading too high for women?

Updated June 1, 2021
A study published Feb. 16, 2021, in Circulation found that women with blood pressure readings in a normal range may still be at higher risk for cardiovascular events. For example, heart attack risk in women rose at a systolic (the upper number) reading of 110 to 119 millimeters of mercury (mm Hg) and was the same at this level as men with a systolic pressure of 160 mm Hg. But experts say it’s too soon to change blood pressure recommendations for women until more research confirms the results.

Plant-based diet quality linked to lower stroke risk

Updated June 1, 2021
People who ate healthy plant-based foods had a 10% reduction in stroke risk, compared with people who ate unhealthy plant-based foods, according toa Harvard study published online March 10, 2021, by the journal Neurology.People who ate healthy plant-based foods had a 10% reduction in stroke risk, compared with people who ate unhealthy plant-based foods, according toa Harvard study published online March 10, 2021, by the journal Neurology.

Alternatives to warfarin may be safer, more effective for afib

Updated June 1, 2021
For people with certain types of valvular atrial fibrillation, drugs known as direct oral anticoagulants (DOACs) may be safer and more effective than warfarin (Coumadin). DOACs include apixaban (Eliquis), dabigatran (Pradaxa), and rivaroxaban (Xarelto).

Diastolic blood pressure: Worth a second look?

Updated June 1, 2021
A diastolic blood pressure reading lower than 60 mm Hg may be linked to an increased risk of heart attack and stroke in people at high cardiovascular risk. Diastolic pressure tends to fall with age. Some people with a low reading have a leaky aortic valve, which interferes with normal blood circulation throughout the heart and causes diastolic pressure to fall. But in people with healthy aortic valves who can be physically active without any symptoms (such as chest pressure, shortness of breath, or lightheadedness), a low diastolic blood pressure should not pose a problem.

American Heart Association issues statement on cardiovascular side effects from hormonal therapy for prostate cancer

Published May 18, 2021
The American Heart Association issued a statement addressing cardiovascular risks from hormonal therapy for prostate cancer, emphasizing the need to identify men with pre-existing cardiac risk factors or a family history of cardiovascular diseases who should be monitored closely during treatment.

Transient ischemic attacks: Varied symptoms, all important

Updated May 11, 2021
A transient ischemic attack is a temporary change in nerve function due to disrupted blood flow. It may affect speech, vision, or movement for a short time, and is considered a warning sign for a stroke. Some symptoms of a TIA may go unnoticed, so knowing all the signs could help you recognize a risk factor for an imminent stroke.

Cancer survivors: A higher risk of heart problems?

Updated May 1, 2021

If you're among the nearly 17 million adults in this country who's had cancer, pay extra attention to your heart health.

Thanks to advances in early detection and treatment, people with cancer are living far longer than in past decades. But cancer survivors should be aware that cancer and its treatments can compromise cardiovascular health, according to a recent study from the CDC.

Researchers studied more than 840,000 adults, including about 69,000 cancer survivors, to see how much cancer "ages" the heart. They found that adult men treated for cancer had hearts that appeared to be 8.5 years older than their actual age, while the hearts of women who survived cancer appeared to be 6.5 years older.

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