Vascular disease "increases stroke risk"

Vascular disease "increases stroke risk"

The risk of having a stroke is significantly higher in people suffering from a certain type of retinal vascular disease than those who do not, new research indicates.

A study carried out by Dr Winifred Werther, then of Genentech Incorporated, California, and now of Vertex Pharmaceuticals, Massachusetts, and published in Archives of Ophthalmology shows that retinal vein occlusion (RVO) sufferers have a significantly higher incidence of stroke.

Analysis of 4,500 patients with RVO and 13,500 control patients by researchers found that patients with RVO had an almost two-fold higher incidence of stroke than the age and sex-matched controls.

They conclude that the data "suggests that physicians and patients should be aware of the possible increased risk of stroke in patients with RVO".

It comes after a new study by experts at Brigham and Women"s Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, showed that the risk of developing age-related macular degeneration can be decreased by consuming oily fish rich in omega-3.

by Martin Burns

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