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‘Osteoporosis in mid-life may lead to cerebral aneurysm'
  • By Lee Han-soo
  • Published 2018.02.27 15:26
  • Updated 2018.02.27 15:26
  • comments 0

Researchers at Seoul National University Hospital Gangnam Center have found that lower bone density can increase the risk of a cerebral aneurysm and such tendencies are more pronounced in postmenopausal women and men aged 50 or older.

Professors Park Kyung-il

A cerebral aneurysm is a weak area in a blood vessel that usually enlarges. About 2 to 5 percent of the population has or will develop a cerebral aneurysm. Most cerebral aneurysms are symptom-free, but when the inflated blood vessels cannot overcome the blood pressure, it causes a rupture, resulting in a 40 percent fatality rate.

The research team, led by Professors Park Kyung-il and Jung Keun-haw of the department of neurology at the hospital, analyzed the results of 12,785 adults who had undergone brain MRI and bone mineral density (BMD) screening at the hospital between 2004 and 2015.

The results showed that 472 subjects, or 3.7 percent, had cerebral aneurysms. When the team divided the patients into three groups according to their BMD, the probability of the group with the lowest BMD having a cerebral aneurysm was 1.3 times higher than the other two groups.

Also, of the 8,722 patients who were either postmenopausal women or men aged 50 or older, 4.6 percent had a cerebral aneurysm. If the patients have osteopenia or osteoporosis, the possibility of them having a more massive or multiple aneurysms was 1.8 times higher than that of the whole group.

“A brain MRI can help detect a cerebral aneurysm in women with low BMD after menopause and those with low BMD in middle-aged and elderly men as well as other well-known risk factors of aneurysm such as hypertension, hyperlipidemia, and smoking at an early stage,” Professor Park said.

Professor Jung also said, “Understanding of the mechanism of cerebral aneurysm formation through bone health measurement will allow medical professionals to predict occurrences of cerebral aneurysms and its risk of rupture,” Jung said. This may lead to a study in developing a treatment for a cerebral aneurysm, he added.

JAMA Neurology published the results of the study.


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