What are the risk factors for vascular dementia?

Updated: Mar 26, 2018
  • Author: Kannayiram Alagiakrishnan, MD, MBBS, MPH, MHA; Chief Editor: Glen L Xiong, MD  more...
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Answer

Risk factors for vascular dementia include hypertension, smoking, hypercholesterolemia, diabetes mellitus, and cardiovascular and cerebrovascular disease.

A large cohort study published in 2010 followed 21,123 heavy midlife smokers (more than 2 packs per day) for a mean of 23 years. These individuals were found more than 2 decades later to have a greater than 100% increased risk of dementia, Alzheimer disease, and vascular dementia in both sexes and across ethnic groups. [19]

Vascular dementia development after stroke can be influenced by many factors. Some of the important factors that can lead to the development of dementia are older age, lower education level, family history of dementia, left-sided lesions, larger lesions, larger periventricular white matter ischemic lesions, and strokes in thalamic artery territory, inferomedian temporal lobes, hippocampus, and watershed infarcts involving superior frontal and parietal regions. [20]


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