Causes of low blood pressure in older adults
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Int J Mol Sci.
Age and pre-existing conditions increase risk of stroke among COVID patients Fourteen out of every 1, COVID patients admitted to hospital experience a stroke, a rate that is even higher in older patients and those with severe infection and pre-existing vascular conditions, according to a report published this week.
Even though the incidence of stroke among COVID patients is relatively low, the scale of the pandemic means that many thousands of people could potentially be affected worldwide Hugh Markus COVID has become a global pandemic, affecting millions of people worldwide.
In many cases, the symptoms include fever, persistent dry cough and breathing difficulties, and can lead to low blood oxygen. However, the infection can cause disease in other organs, including the brain, and in more severe cases can lead to stroke and brain haemorrhage.
A team of researchers at the Stroke Research Group, University of Cambridge, carried out a systematic review and meta-analysis of published research into the link between COVID and stroke. This approach allows researchers to bring together existing — and often contradictory or under-powered — studies to provide more robust conclusions. In total, the researchers analysed 61 studies, covering more thanpatients admitted to hospital with COVID The results of their study are published in the International Journal of Stroke.
The researchers found that stroke occurred in 14 out of every 1, cases. The most common manifestation was acute ischemic stroke, which occurred in just over 12 out of every 1, cases. Brain haemorrhage was less common, occurring in 1.
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There was no sex difference and no significant difference in rates of smokers versus non-smokers. Pre-existing conditions also increased the risk of stroke. Patients with high blood pressure were more likely to experience stroke than patients with normal blood pressure, while both diabetes and coronary artery disease also increased risk.
The researchers found that COVIDassociated strokes often followed a characteristic pattern, with stroke caused by blockage of a large cerebral artery, and brain imaging showing strokes in more than one cerebral arterial territory.
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COVIDassociated strokes were also more severe and had a high mortality. Firstly, SARSCoV2 more so than other coronaviruses — and significantly more so than seasonal flu — appears to be associated with stroke.
Secondly, we see a particular pattern of stroke in individuals with COVID, which suggests a causal relationship in at least a proportion of patients. One mechanism might be that the virus triggers an inflammatory response that causes thickening of the blood, increasing the risk of thrombosis and stroke.
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This receptor is commonly found on cells in the lungs, heart, kidneys, and in the lining of blood vessels — if the virus invades the lining of blood vessels, it could cause inflammation, constricting the blood vessels and restricting blood flow.
A third possible mechanism is the immune system over-reacting to infection, with subsequent excessive release of proteins known causes of low blood pressure in older adults cytokine.
The team say their results may have important clinical implications. Epub ahead of print. PMID: Cambridge Neuroscience Coordinator.