Inability to Balance on One Leg May Indicate Stroke Risk

June 22, 2015 · Posted in Risk Factors · Comment 

stroke risk

A balance test may indicate declining cognitive health and risk for stroke. Researchers led by Yasuharu Tabara had previously found that balancing on one leg became more difficult for people with age. Now the same team has found that this type of postural instability is associated with decreases in cognitive functioning and with risk of stroke. Fourteen hundred participants with an average age of 67 were challenged to balance on one leg for up to 60 seconds. They also completed computer surveys, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans, and a procedure to measure the thickness of their carotid artery. Those who could not balance on one leg for 20 seconds or longer were more likely to have cerebral small vessel disease.

Editor’s Note: Whether exercise would reverse this vulnerability remains to be seen, but lots of other data suggest the benefit of regular (even light) exercise on general health.

More Evidence Vortioxetine Improves Depression and Cognitive Function

June 10, 2015 · Posted in Current Treatments · Comment 

vortioxetineVortioxetine (Brintellix) is a relatively new antidepressant that has a range of effects on serotonin receptors, making it different from selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), which work only on the serotonin transporter. In multiple studies, it has treated not only depression but also cognitive dysfunction. In a new study led by Atul Mahableshwarkar and published in the journal Neuropsychopharmacology, 10–20 mg/day of vortioxetine reduced symptoms of depression more than placebo and improved performance on tests of cognitive ability more than placebo and another antidepressant, duloxetine.

While depression is often accompanied by cognitive dysfunction, in this study vortioxetine seemed to directly treat the cognitive deficits rather than reducing them by alleviating the depression. The participants were aged 18–65.

« Previous Page