This site is intended for health professionals only

Coping with stress "cuts strokes"

New research claims people who take a relaxed attitude and cope well with stress can reduce their risk of having a stroke by around 25%.

More than 20,000 adults were analysed for more than seven years, during which time 452 strokes were recorded.

All the participants were aged between 41 and 80, and the experts noted more than 100,000 stressful incidents including death, divorce and separation.

But it found those who believe the events in their life are meaningful, comprehensible and manageable have less chance of being hit by a stroke.

Strokes affect an estimated 150,000 people each year in the UK, and account for more than 60,000 deaths per annum.

Some 250,000 people also live with disabilities caused by a stroke.

The study is published in the journal Stroke, and was led by Dr Paul Surtees, from the University of Cambridge.

He said: "Our findings suggest that people who are able to adapt more rapidly to stressful circumstances in their lives had a lower risk of stroke.

"Whilst many questions remain to be answered by further research, this evidence raises the possibility that improving our ability to respond to stress may have benefits for vascular health."


Copyright © PA Business 2007