Watch your anger and mood! It may cause a stroke, says study

A global study that looks into causes of stroke indicates that being angry or being emotionally upset can also trigger the health condition.
Be it anger or depression - express what you feel instead of bottling up your emotions. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
Team Health Shots Published: 3 Dec 2021, 17:12 pm IST
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Your emotions are an important part of your overall well-being. But did you know that some emotions can even trigger a stroke? Well, we’re not saying that, but a  new global study looking into causes of stroke has found that one in 11 survivors experienced a period of anger or upset in the one hour leading up to it.

The research, co-led by NUI Galway and published in the European Heart Journal, also found that one in 20 patients had engaged in heavy physical exertion.

The suspected triggers have been identified as part of the global INTERSTROKE study, the largest research project of its kind. It analysed 13,462 cases of acute stroke, involving patients with a range of ethnic backgrounds in 32 countries.

Stroke is a leading global cause of death or disability.

“Stroke prevention is a priority for physicians, and despite advances, it remains difficult to predict when a stroke will occur. Many studies have focused on medium to long-term exposures, such as hypertension, obesity or smoking. Our study aimed to look at acute exposures that may act as triggers,” said Andrew Smyth, Professor of Clinical Epidemiology at NUI Galway, one of the lead researchers.

The research analyzed patterns in patients who suffered an ischemic stroke — the most common type of stroke, which occurs when a blood clot blocks or narrows an artery leading to the brain, and also intracerebral haemorrhage — which is less common and involves bleeding within the brain tissue itself.

According to Smyth, anger or emotional upset was linked to an approximately 30 per cent increase in the risk of stroke during one hour after an episode. “It came with a greater increase if the patient did not have a history of depression. The odds were also greater for those with a lower level of education,” he added.

Also Read: So you think strokes only happen to older people? A doctor busts 7 such myths about strokes

A stroke can be of different types. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

Physical exertion

Besides this, they also found that heavy physical exertion was linked to an approximately 60 percent rise in risk of intracerebral haemorrhage during the one hour after the episode of heavy exertion. “There was a greater increase for women and less risk for those with a normal BMI,” Smyth explained.

Experts who worked on the research have urged people to practice mental and physical wellness at all ages. Also, people who are particularly at a high risk of cardiovascular issues, should avoid heavy physical exertion apart from adopting a healthy lifestyle of regular exercise.

What is a stroke?

It is characterized as a neurological deficit, attributed to an acute focal injury of the nervous system, defines Dr Sudheer Puttiboyina MD.DM-Neurology, Consultant Neuro Physician, Kamineni Healthcare Pvt Ltd, Vijayawada. The expert tells us more about it.

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A stroke can be due to:

  • Cerebral infarction
  • Intra-cerebral hemorrhage
  • Subarachnoid hemorrhage
Learn the signs and symptoms of stroke. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

Common stroke symptoms are:

  • One-sided body weakness
  • Sensory loss
  • Aphasia
  • Vision changes
  • Vertigo
  • Ataxia
  • Dizziness(or) sudden fall

Common risk factors for stroke are:

  • Blood Pressure
  • Diabetes
  • Smoking
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Coronary artery disease
  • Decreased physical activity
  • Atrial fibrillation-irregular heart beats
  • Increased waist-to-hip ration

(With Inputs from ANI)

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