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Study Explores Link Between Weight and Stroke Risk in Women

Being overweight ups odds for ischemic stroke, but may slightly lower chances for hemorrhagic stroke

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THURSDAY, Sept. 8, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- Excess weight may put women at increased risk for ischemic stroke, but at lower risk for hemorrhagic stroke, according to research published online Sept. 7 in Neurology.

The study was led by Gillian Reeves, Ph.D., of the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom. Her team tracked the 12-year health history of British women who averaged 57 years of age.

During that time, rates of ischemic stroke were 1.0 percent among obese women and 0.7 percent among women with a healthy weight. Rates of hemorrhagic stroke were 0.4 percent among obese women and 0.5 percent among women with a healthy weight.

"In U.K. women, higher body mass index is associated with increased risk of ischemic stroke but decreased risk of hemorrhagic stroke," the authors write. "The totality of the available published evidence suggests that body mass index-associated risks are greater for ischemic than for hemorrhagic stroke."

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