Celiac Disease May Increase Risk of Vascular Dementia

Doctors-300x199.jpgA recent study in the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease offers some interesting​ information about celiac disease as it relates to dementia, especially vascular dementia.

The Study

Researchers from the Celiac Disease Center at Columbia University conducted the study, which is entitled "Risk of Dementia in Patients with Celiac Disease: A Population-Based Cohort Study.​"

For this study, the scientists looked at 8,800 people who were older than 50 years of age and who had not been diagnosed with dementia. They noted whether each person did or did not have celiac disease. Eight years later they looked at the status of these same participants to see what percentage had developed dementia.

Of the individuals in the study who had celiac disease, 4.3% had developed some form of dementia; of those who did NOT have celiac disease, 4.4% had developed some form of dementia. This seems to indicate that having celiac disease does not impact whether or not a person will develop dementia in general.

Vascular Dementia

However, the story changes somewhat if one looks at a particular form of dementia, namely vascular dementia.

Vascular dementia is the term applied to cognitive and memory issues that may occur after one experiences a stroke or series of strokes. (Not everyone who experiences a stroke develops vascular dementia.)

When researchers looked at the subgroup of patients in the study who developed vascular dementia, they found that there was a slightly higher risk of developing vascular dementia among those with celiac disease. However, the increased risk is small, and it is difficult to tell from this one study whether the data are conclusive.

Celiac Disease

Celiac disease is a digestive disorder which affects the body's ability to process gluten. Patients with celiac disease have a slightly higher risk of cardiovascular disease. If there is indeed a higher risk of developing vascular dementia among these patients, it may be related to the increased risk of heart disease and strokes.

Further studies are needed to determine if there may be a link between celiac disease and vascular dementia.​

Related Article
Ten Warning Signs of Vascular Dementia​​ - centraldallas.myhomecareblog.com


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