People who are depressed have a higher risk of suffering from strokes compared to others, according to a new study conducted by researchers at Harvard School of Public Health in Boston.
The researchers analyzed 28 different studies on depression involving more than 317,000 people who were followed up over 2 to 28 years and found that the number of strokes per 100,000 people increased by 106 cases, with 22 of them being fatal.
However the researchers were unable to find what caused the increased risk of strokes or whether it was caused by taking anti-depressant medications. "These medications could be one possible reason for the increased risk of stroke in depression and the majority of studies did not control for this. The current data on whether medications have an independent role (in stroke) is not clear at this moment", lead researcher An Pan said.
The study has been published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.