Current Atherosclerosis Reports

, Volume 3, Issue 4, pp 334–339 | Cite as

Stroke and cognition

  • Raj N. Kalaria
  • Clive Ballard


Several studies confirm cognitive impairment and dementia to be increased after stroke in the elderly. Although not necessarily involving memory deficits, the frequency of cognitive impairments may occur in up to 30% of stroke survivors at 3 months. This impairment may be confounded by preexisting cognitive decline or dementia. By contrast, cognitive changes and dementia are widely recognized in familial forms of stroke, such as cerebral autosomal dominant arteriopathy with subcortical infarcts and leukoencephalopathy (CADASIL). Several factors, including type of stroke, recurrent episodes, the site and laterality of the lesion(s), volume of cerebral infarction, medial temporal lobe atrophy, and coexistent neurodegenerative pathology predict the degree of impairment. Aphasia, diabetes mellitus, atrial fibrillation, and depression are listed among other biologic factors that further exacerbate cognition and affect long-term survival. There is no clear consensus whether genetic factors, such as the apolipoprotein E ε4 allele or angiotensin converting enzyme gene polymorphisms, modify cognitive changes or stroke outcome. Although several neurotransmitter systems may be affected in post-stroke dementia, the amelioration of cholinergic function is a worthy target.


Dementia Stroke Patient Cognitive Decline Vascular Dementia White Matter Lesion 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Current Science Inc 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Raj N. Kalaria
    • 1
  • Clive Ballard
    • 1
  1. 1.CBV GroupWolfson Research Centre, Newcastle General HospitalNewcastle upon TyneUnited Kingdom

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