It is pointed out that chronic hypotension may cause dementia


Martin Péchy

Dementia, whose brain function declines and interferes with cognitive function, becomes more likely to develop with age, and it is often thought that dementia is inevitable as long as you live longer. But `` many people don't get dementia as they age, '' Professor Kenneth McLeod, who studies clinical science at Binghamton University , pointed out, 'Chronic hypotension may be one of the causes of dementia.' Insist.

Low blood pressure could be a culprit in dementia, studies suggest

Although high blood pressure is generally regarded as a problem causing various lifestyle-related diseases, recent research suggests that hypotension may increase the risk of brain-related diseases. A 2017 study that tracked more than 24,000 people over a period of 27 years showed that hypotension is an important factor predicting the development of dementia. According to this study, it has been demonstrated that hypotension increases the risk of dementia regardless of age, gender, weight, cardiovascular disease, kidney disease, diabetes, etc.

McLeod points out that low blood pressure is related to a decrease in blood flow to the brain when sitting or standing. Many researchers, including McLeod, believe that a lack of cerebral blood flow can cause brain dysfunction, including dementia, and health care workers He argues that some intervention may be necessary.



McLeod's team investigating the relationship between hypotension and dementia uses a cognitive function measurement tool approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to target people over the age of 50 Did the cognitive function test.

The subjects were all educated and graduated from high school and were evaluated for cognitive function with a score of 0-100 each. If the score is 75 or higher, there is no problem with cognitive function, but if the score is between 50 and 75, it is judged that the cognitive function is below the normal range, and the risk of developing dementia is high Will be. If the score is less than 50, the person is considered to have symptoms of dementia.

Past studies published by McLeod et al. Have shown that diastolic blood pressure (the lower blood pressure), especially when the heart is not contracting, is a good predictor of cognitive function. Therefore, the research team compared the scores from the cognitive function measurement tool to the blood pressure measured at rest when the participants sat in a stress-free environment. As a result, it was found that about three-quarters of subjects whose diastolic blood pressure was below normal were cognitive functions that were below average.


Matthias Zomer

Many older adults in the United States sit on average more than 9 hours a day , and resting blood pressure is “daily blood pressure” for many participants. On the other hand, people with diastolic blood pressure below 60 mmHg (millimeter of mercury) are generally diagnosed with hypotension, but McLeod says, `` Even people with diastolic blood pressure below 80 mmHg are cognitive when standing upright Was found to be significantly reduced. ' The results of this experiment are consistent with the results of a study examining the relationship between hypotension and cognitive function in young people.

Decreased diastolic blood pressure may occur as a result of drug use or heart failure, but in many cases, a single heartbeat does not deliver enough blood. The drop in blood volume that can be pumped in a single heartbeat occurs when there is little blood returning from the lower body to the heart.

What is important in sending blood back from the lower body to the heart is the muscle called “ soleus muscle ” that exists in the calf, also called the second heart. McLeod and colleagues have discovered in a decade of research that the soleus muscle plays an important role in maintaining blood pressure in a sitting position. “It ’s an effective strategy to keep blood pressure,” McLeod points out. It is possible to strengthen the soleus muscle by squatting or standing on the tip of the toe, but this means that it takes a very long time and effort, McLeod said that blood due to the soleus muscle even with electrical and mechanical stimulation It states that reflux can be increased significantly.

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McLeod claims that preliminary clinical studies have confirmed that stimulating the soleus daily for months can increase resting diastolic blood pressure and improve cognitive decline with age. McLeod said the healthcare community could prevent or slow the progression of dementia by intervening in chronically low blood pressure.

in Science, Posted by log1h_ik