Partner's death increases stroke risk in first 30 days: Study
Bereavement is recognised as a risk factor for death and is associated with cardiovascular events.
Now, new research indicates that the risk of heart attack or stroke is increased in 30 days after a partner's death.
"We have described a marked increase in cardiovascular risk in the month after spousal bereavement, which seems likely to be the result of adverse physiological responses associated with acute grief," said researchers.
A better understanding of psychosocial factors associated with acute cardiovascular events may provide opportunities for prevention and improved clinical care, they added.
The authors compared the rate of stroke in older patients whose partner died to that of individuals whose partners were still alive during the same period.
Fifty patients experienced stroke within 30 days of their partner's death compared with 67 in the control group.
The increased risk of stroke in bereaved men and women lessened after 30 days, said the study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).
(Posted on 25-02-2014)