According to JAMA Neurology’s recently published research study, the researcher claims that there are chances that a person may get a cognitive decline if he gets a heart attack in his older days. The study is based on data collected from six major studies conducted between 1971 and 2019 and involves over 30,000 participants who did not have dementia or prior heart attacks or strokes. The research said that people who already had a heart attack get a cognitive decline faster. People with healthy hearts may fall into this situation less likely.
Although the stats show that there are a few cognitive decline cases and the number increases annually at a slow rate. The researchers also noted that a person becomes more prone to age-related neurodegenerative conditions because the subclinical decline could impair cognitive function. The study also focuses on the fastest decline rate in white individuals compared to black persons and in men compared to women. Stroke or atrial fibrillation could not account for these variations.
Previous studies have also suggested a relationship between heart attacks and accelerated cognitive decline. The mechanisms behind this connection are not yet fully discovered, but potential factors include depression following a heart attack, blood pressure abnormalities, chronic inflammation, and small blood vessel disease. Individuals with a history of heart attacks must be periodically screened for cognitive symptoms and consider referral to a cognitive specialist or neuropsychologist.