Wednesday September 19, 2018

Dengue fever may increase risk of stroke: Study

For the study, published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, the researchers looked at data on 13,787 patients

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Dengue is transmitted by the bite of the Aedes mosquito that typically attacks during day time. Pixabay
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  • Dengue fever can increase the risk of stroke
  • Dengue is a mosquito-borne disease
  • The research was started in around 2012

People with dengue fever may have a higher risk of stroke, especially in the first two months following infection, a new study has claimed.

Dengue is a mosquito-borne disease.

Dengue is a mosquito-borne viral infection that infects at least 100 million people every year around the world, with about 4 billion people at risk of the illness, which includes dengue hemorrhagic fever that can lead to spontaneous bleeding, organ failure and death.

“Clinicians in dengue-endemic areas should be aware of this association, especially for patients with dengue who have neurologic deficits or for patients with stroke who have unexplained fever,” said co-author Chia-Hung Kao from the China Medical University Hospital in Taiwan.

Stroke is a severe neurologic complication of dengue fever, described in only a few case reports. The incidence and risk factors for stroke in patients with dengue remain unclear, the researchers said.

We conducted a population-based retrospective cohort study to investigate the risk of stroke in patients with dengue, the researchers added.

People suffering dengue fever have higher risk of suffering from strokes.
People suffering dengue fever have higher risk of suffering from strokes.

For the study, published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, the researchers looked at data on 13,787 patients (most between 31 and 60 years of age) with newly diagnosed dengue between 2000 and 2012. They found the incidence of stroke was higher in people with dengue fever.

The risk of stroke was as high as 2.49 times in the first two months of infection with dengue relative to control patients who did not have dengue,” the researchers said.

Also Read: Decoded: Why Mosquitoes Bite You

“Our findings may help with clinical risk evaluation and may serve as a basis for further investigation of the pathogenesis of dengue-related stroke,” they noted. IANS

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Scientists Develop Potential Approach to Treat Dementia, Stroke

"It also shows that these changes may be reversible, paving the way for potential treatments," Williams added

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The article provides information on the topic "Scientists Develop Potential Approach to Treat Dementia, Stroke". (IANS)

Stopping blood vessel cells from becoming dysfunctional may reverse the symptoms of small vessel disease (SVD) — major cause of dementia and stroke — and prevent brain damage in older adults, scientists have found.

The study, led by the University of Edinburgh, found that SVD occurs when cells that line the small blood vessels in the brain become dysfunctional causing them to secrete a molecule into the brain.

The molecule stops production of the protective layer that surrounds brain cells — called myelin — leading to brain damage.

“This important research helps us understand why small vessel disease happens, providing a direct link between small blood vessels and changes in the brain that are linked to dementia,” said Anna Williams from University of Edinburgh’s MRC Centre for Regenerative Medicine in Scotland.

“It also shows that these changes may be reversible, paving the way for potential treatments,” Williams added.

1 in 6 people over the age of 80 have dementia. Pixabay
1 in 6 people over the age of 80 have dementia. Pixabay

In the study, published in the journal Science Translational Medicine, the team used rat model and found that treating them with drugs that can reverse changes in blood vessels in the brain associated with cerebral small vessel disease.

“The findings highlight a promising direction for research into treatments that could limit the damaging effects of blood vessel changes and help keep nerve cells functioning for longer,” said Sara Imarisio, Head of Research at Alzheimer’s Research in Britain.

Also Read: Sleep Disorder Linked with Brain Changes Found in Dementia

However, further studies are needed to test whether the treatment also works when the disease is firmly established, researchers said.

Dementia is one of the biggest problems facing society, as people live longer and the population ages.

Estimates indicate there are almost 47 million people living with dementia worldwide and the numbers affected are expected to double every 20 years, rising to more than 115 million by 2050. (IANS)