The abuse of stimulant drugs such as cocaine and amphetamines may increase the risk of stroke by raising blood pressure or triggering spasms in blood vessel walls that contribute to the narrowing of the vessels, a US study says.
Researchers analysed data on patients treated for stroke or drug abuse at Texas hospitals between 2000 and 2003. They concluded that amphetamine abuse was associated with a fivefold increased risk of haemorrhagic stroke (bleeding in the brain), but not ischemic stroke (blocked blood flow to the brain).
They also found that cocaine was associated with a greater than twofold increased risk of both haemorrhagic and ischaemic stroke.
In addition, amphetamine abuse, but not cocaine use, was associated with a higher risk of death after haemorrhagic stroke, the study authors said.
The study is published in the April issue of the journal Archives of General Psychiatry. – (HealthDayNews)
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