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Category: Heart Health and Cholesterol
A homocysteine test may help consumers understand their heart health measures, as elevated levels of the amino acid have been linked to cardiovascular disease due to weakened arteries.
High blood pressure, another symptom of excess homocysteine, could also cause "silent strokes," which have fewer symptoms than their more well-known counterparts, according to researchers at University of New South Wales in Australia.
In a study of nearly 500 people aged 60 to 64, they found small lunar infarctions in about 8 percent of the population. The infarctions are small areas of damage caused by micro-strokes.
While the overall numbers were not large, the scientists ascertained that people with hypertension were 60 percent more likely to have the brain damage associated with "silent strokes" after four years than those with normal blood pressure measures.
"These strokes are not truly silent, because they have been linked to memory and thinking problems and are a possible cause of a type of dementia," noted study author Dr Perminder Sachdev. "High blood pressure is very treatable, so this may be a strong target for preventing vascular disease."
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