Lower risk of Parkinson’s disease after a heart attack, study suggests


Author: Sarah McGrathPublished: 24 February 2022

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An elderly Indian man clutches his heart.

People who have had a heart attack may be less likely to develop Parkinson’s disease than those who haven’t, a new study from Denmark has suggested.

To investigate the frequency of Parkinson’s among people in relation to their heart health, researchers from Aarhus University Hospital, Denmark, analysed health registries from the Danish National Health Service between 1995 and 2016. They compared 181,994 people who had survived a first-time heart attack with a control group of 909,970 people who had no history of heart attacks.

The researchers found that heart attack survivors had a 20% lower risk of Parkinson’s disease, relative to the control group.

Reflecting on the results of the study, first author Jens Sundbøll said: “These findings indicate that the risk of Parkinson’s is at least not increased following a heart attack, and should not be a worry for patients or a preventive focus for clinicians at follow-up.”

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