Strokes: Drawing test 'may predict risks in older men'
Published: 9th May 2012 12:41:26
A simple drawing test may help predict the risk of older men dying after a first stroke, a study in the journal BMJ Open suggests.
Taken while healthy, the test involves drawing lines between numbers in ascending order as fast as possible.
Men who scored in the bottom third were about three times as likely to die after a stroke compared with those who were in the highest third.
The study looked at 1,000 men between the ages of 67 and 75 over 14 years.
Of the 155 men who had a stroke, 22 died within a month and more than half within an average of two- and-a-half years.
The researchers think that tests are able to pick up hidden damage to brain blood vessels when there are no other obvious signs or symptoms.
Dr Clare Walton, from the Stroke Association, said: "This is an interesting study because it suggests there may be early changes in the brain that puts someone at a greater risk of having a fatal stroke.
"This is a small study and the causes of poor ability on the drawing task is not known. Although much more research is needed, this task has the potential to screen for those most at risk of a severe or fatal stroke before it occurs so that they can benefit from preventative treatments."
Dr Bernice Wiberg, lead author from Uppsala University in Sweden, said: "As the tests are very simple, cheap and easily accessible for clinical use, they could be a valuable tool - alongside traditional methods like measuring blood pressure (and) asking about smoking - for identifying risk of stroke, but also as a possible important predictor of post-stroke mortality."
She also suggested it could help improve information given to patients and their family.
More than 150,000 people suffer a stroke every year.
At 01:45:16 in WorldThe National Guard has begun withdrawing from Ferguson, Missouri, where the shooting of an unarmed black teenager by a white policeman has sparked days of protests.
At 01:11:34 in HeadlinesThe streets of Leeds will be awash with the sights, sounds and scents of the West Indies on Monday, but how did carnival spirit make the journey from the sun-drenched islands of the Caribbean to the cooler climes of Chapeltown?
At 01:08:28 in HeadlinesThe British Newspaper Archive is a treasure trove of outlandish tales from the Victorian press. Author Jeremy Clay tells the story of a monkey that went on a drunken rampage.
At 01:07:30 in HeadlinesDo you know your ancient from your modern? Test your knowledge of British history with these 12 quick questions.
At 01:00:22 in HeadlinesAttempts to cut the amount people smoke are being hit by a black market trade in millions of illegal cigarettes, council bosses have warned.
At 00:47:56 in TechnologyCan you keep a secret? The technology industry sure can't.
At 00:44:30 in WorldResidents of south China are often caricatured as enthusiastic eaters of dog meat.
At 00:39:00 in WorldOn the morning of 19 August 1944, a 28-year-old Frenchman called Georges Loiseleur hurried down to the street from his flat on the Quai des Grands-Augustins.
At 00:31:41 in HeadlinesA study has found a "considerable richness" of wild bee species in most types of urban habitats.
At 00:28:31 in EnglandA historian has hailed a 9th Century silver buckle discovered on farmland in Suffolk as a rare find.
Harvard CitationBBC News, 2012. Strokes: Drawing test 'may predict risks in older men' [Online] (Updated 9th May 2012)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/1427463/Strokes-Drawing-test-may-predict-risks-in-older-men [Accessed 23rd Aug 2014]
News In Other Categories
Attempts to cut the amount people smoke are being hit by a black market trade in millions of illegal cigarettes, council bosses have warned.
BT has warned millions of customers it is increasing its prices by up to 6.5% from December this year.
A 91-year-old great-grandmother needed surgery after being bitten by a dog while walking home in Cardiff.
Rory McIlroy fought back from a rusty start with a second-round 65 to ease into contention in the first of the four PGA Tour play-off events.
Authorities in New York have denied parole to the man who shot dead musician John Lennon in 1980 for the eight time.
The bosses of the BBC and South Yorkshire Police have been summoned to appear before MPs after a claim of a "cover-up" over a recent police raid on Sir Cliff Richard's Berkshire home.