Midlife blood pressure is only weakly associated with dementia risk

Takeaway

  • Elevated blood pressure (BP) is moderately inversely associated with dementia during the first 10 years following the initial measurement, but there was only a weak link thereafter. Because a reduction in BP occurs prior to clinical diagnosis of dementia, the inverse associations during the first 10 years are probably due to reverse-causation.

Why this matters

  • This is the largest study to investigate the association between BP and dementia: the observation that BP is not positively associated with the risk of dementia at any age, regardless of time since index BP measurement, suggests that lowering BP would not help to reduce this disease.