Thursday, January 19, 2006

Moderate drinking cuts stroke risk

NEW YORK - A drink or two a day may decrease the risk of ischemic stroke, researchers said.

Moderate drinkers, defined as those who consumed at least one drink per month but no more than two per day, had a 33% reduced risk of ischemic stroke compared with individuals who didn't drink.

"Although alcohol consumption should not be recommended to those who do not drink, because of its potential adverse effects, our data support the view, endorsed by national stroke prevention guidelines, that among those who are moderate drinkers, continued consumption may reduce stroke risk," they concluded.

Those who drank more than two drinks daily did not have an increased risk for ischemic stroke, although there was a non-significant trend toward elevated risk of hemorrhagic stroke.

In an editorial, Larry B. Goldstein, M.D., of the Duke University Medical Center, stated that non-drinkers should not be advised to consume alcohol to prevent stroke, and he added that heavy drinkers should be told to reduce or eliminate their consumption.

The first hours of a stroke are so important. Know the symptoms of "brain attack" :

-unexplained, sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm, or leg
-confusion
-trouble talking or understanding
-sudden vision problems
-sudden walking problems
-dizziness
-loss of balance or coordination
-unexplained and sudden headache
-sudden nausea, vomiting, and fever
-loss of or decreased consciousness

Recognizing these symptoms early is crucial. Why? See the video. (Click "Launch" the video -here.)

Cutting edge stroke treatments. See the video. (Click "Launch" the video - here.)

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