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What is the association between blood pressure and cognitive decline? Did you know?

Updated: Dec 6, 2022

Effects of blood pressure on the vascular system

High blood pressure's effect on the vascular system is well documented. Studies have investigated the consequences of high blood pressure on cognitive performance and how damage to the blood vessels affects mental acuity.

Nevertheless, the study [1] wanted to similarly evaluate the cognitive effects that high blood pressure had on the brain (via a systematic review) for a study population without severe cardiovascular disease and dementia. Without these external factors, the study could more accurately evaluate the effects of high blood pressure on cognitive performance.

The study's authors [1] combined the individual results from 50 separate clinical trials that met their specific requirements. Within these 50 studies, 107,405 patient data sets were analysed.

The results

The relationship between cognitive decline and blood pressure is summarised below:

Lifespan relationship

Earlier onset than previously believed...

Age is primary risk factor

Cardiovascular paradox?

Blood pressure is essential!

Cardiovascular and neurocognitive systems are related and do not work in isolation.

With some limitations to consider, blood pressure could be considered an early biomarker for the measurement of cognitive impairment in populations without dementia and stroke.

The relationship between high blood pressure and cognitive impairment illustrates the importance of controlling blood pressure within normal limits (120/80) and highlights the importance of better controlling pre-hypertension blood pressure (120-129/80-89) [1, 2]

Let's prevent cognitive decline rather than treat it


[1] Forte G, De Pascalis V, Favieri F, Casagrande M. Effects of Blood Pressure on Cognitive Performance: A Systematic Review. Journal of Clinical Medicine. 2019;9(1):34.

[2] Khandekar JS, Vasavi VL, Singh VP, Samuel SR, Sudhan SG, Khandelwal B. Effect of Yoga on Blood Pressure in Prehypertension: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. The Scientific World Journal. 2021;2021:1-10.


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