Annals of Neurosciences, Vol 13, No 1 (2006)

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Homocysteine: A Possible Modifiable Risk Factor in Vascular Dementia

Pratima Pandey, Sunil Pradhan


Vascular dementia (VaD) is a degenerative cerebrovascular disorder that results from ischemic or hemorrhagic brain damage. Epidemiological studies suggest that in eastern population like China, Japan, and Russia, VaD is more prevalent than AD(1). The five years survival rate is 39% for patients with VaD with respect to 75% for age matched controls. In some studies it has been found that homocysteine levels increase with age. Multi infarct dementia (MID) is the most common type of VaD that leads to a progressive decline in memory and cognition by narrowing blood vessels in the brain. This narrowing is done by accumulation of atherosclerotic plaques in these vessels. Probably this co-existence of VaD with atherosclerotic disease is the cause of higher mortality rate than AD. Hyperhomocysteinemia which is a condition of moderately high plasma level of homocysteine has been shown to be associated with cerebrovascular disease. Hyperhomocysteinemia, now a day, is being considered as an independent and modifiable risk factor for cardiovascular as well as cerebrovascular diseases, besides other risk factors like smoking, dyslipidemia, hypertension and obesity.

doi: 10.5214/ans.0972.7531.2006.130103


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