Aggressively lowering blood pressure could reduce risk of developing dementia, study finds

The medical mantra that “what’s good for the heart is good for the brain” got more support Wednesday.

Aggressively lowering blood pressure in people at high risk for heart attacks and stroke also reduced their likelihood of developing mild cognitive impairment, a condition that often leads to dementia, a new study found.

“This is the first intervention ever to be shown to reduce the risk of MCI,” said Jeff Williamson, who helped lead the study and who co-directs the Alzheimer’s Research Center at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

Patients treated to reduce their systolic blood pressure – the top number in a blood pressure reading – to 120 mm Hg were 19 percent less likely to develop mild cognitive impairment than those whose blood pressure was targeted to 140 mm Hg.

Full story at USA Today