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Atrial fibrillation increases the risk of cognitive decline and need for long term care

BMJ 2012; 344 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.e1591 (Published 01 March 2012) Cite this as: BMJ 2012;344:e1591
  1. Barbara Kermode-Scott
  1. 1Hamilton, Canada

Atrial fibrillation increases the risk of cognitive decline and dementia, independent of clinically overt stroke and baseline cognitive function, shows prospective evidence from an international study. The findings highlight the need to include cognitive and functional measures in clinical trials of patients with atrial fibrillation, suggest the authors.

For the study, researchers from Canada, Italy, Ireland, and Australia conducted a post hoc analysis of two randomised controlled trials involving 31 546 patients (CMAJ, 27 February, 2012, doi:10.1503/cmaj.111173). These trials evaluated the treatment with ramipril plus telmisartan (ONTARGET) and of telmisartan alone (TRANSCEND) in reducing cardiovascular disease.

The investigators evaluated …

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