"Given how common both stroke and dementia are, this strong link is an important finding. Improvements in stroke prevention and post-stroke care may therefore play a key role in dementia prevention," coauthor Ilianna Lourida said in a statement.
While the scientists do not fully understand why there is an association between the two health conditions, they believe stroke characteristics, such as brain damage, could be a component.
They noted that most people who have a stroke do not go on to develop the disorder. They also hope to further investigate the relationship between the two health conditions.
"Around a third of dementia cases are thought to be potentially preventable, though this estimate does not take into account the risk associated with stroke," coauthor David Llewellyn added. "Our findings indicate that this figure could be even higher, and reinforce the importance of protecting the blood supply to the brain when attempting to reduce the global burden of dementia."
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