February 23, 2011
COPENHAGENMen and women who have elevated levels of non-fasting triglycerides, not cholesterol levels, have an increased risk of ischemic stroke, according to a new study published in the Annals of Neurology. The findings also suggest higher cholesterol levels were associated with greater stroke risk in men only.
Researchers at Copenhagen University Hospital followed 7,579 women and 6,372 men who participated in the Copenhagen City Heart Study. During a 33-year follow-up, 837 women and 837 men developed ischemic stroke. The findings confirmed higher non-fasting triglyceride levels were linked with an increased risk of stroke in men and women, even after adjusting for age, gender, smoking, alcohol use, lipid-lowering therapy, hormone therapy and other factors.
Women with triglyceride levels of 443 mg/dL nearly quadrupled their risk of stroke, compared to those with levels less than 89 mg/dL. Women with triglyceride levels between 89 and 177 mg/dL had a 20-percent increased risk. The increased risk in men ranged from 20 percent to 2.3-times higher, with the risk increasing as triglyceride levels increased.
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