No sign of 'obesity paradox' in obese patients with stroke

June 2, 2014

Researchers found no evidence of an "obesity paradox" (some studies have suggested overweight or obese patients have lower mortality rates than underweight or normal weight patients) in patients with stroke.

Obesity often is associated with increased health related complications and death. But some studies have suggested an obesity paradox that may cause some to question striving for a .

The authors sought to determine whether the obesity paradox in stroke was real or an artificial finding because of selection bias in studies. To overcome selection bias, authors only studied deaths caused by the index stroke using a Danish register of stroke and a registry of deaths. The study included 71,617 Danes for whom information was available on factors that included (BMI), age, stroke type and stroke severity.

Of the 71,617 , 7,878 (11 percent) died within the first month and, of these, stroke was reported as the cause of death of 5,512 patients (70 percent). Of the patients for whom BMI information was available, 9.7 percent were underweight, 39 percent were normal weight, 34.5 percent were overweight and 16.8 percent were obese. BMI was inversely related to average age of stroke onset (high BMI associated with younger age of onset).

"This study was unable to confirm the existence of an obesity paradox in stroke. … Obesity was not associated with a lower risk for death after a stroke. … The risk of with stroke for death did not differ from that of normal-weight patients with nor was there evidence of a survival advantage associated with being overweight." Christian Dehlendorff, M.S., Ph.D., of the Danish Cancer Society Research Center, Copenhagen, Denmark, and colleagues said in their JAMA Neurology paper.

Explore further: Effect of obesity on patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer

More information: JAMA Neurol. Published online June 2, 2014. DOI: 10.1001/.jamaneurol.2014.1017

Related Stories

Obesity may shorten colon cancer survival

April 9, 2014

(HealthDay)—Colon cancer patients who were obese before their diagnosis may have an increased risk of dying from their cancer and other causes, a new study finds.

Considerable sudden death in hypertrophic cardiomyopathy

April 22, 2014

(HealthDay)—Patients with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HC) without traditional risk factors and with no or mild symptoms have a considerable rate of sudden cardiac death, according to a study published in the May 1 issue ...

Recommended for you

New insights on how cocaine changes the brain

November 25, 2015

The burst of energy and hyperactivity that comes with a cocaine high is a rather accurate reflection of what's going on in the brain of its users, finds a study published November 25 in Cell Reports. Through experiments conducted ...

Can physical exercise enhance long-term memory?

November 25, 2015

Exercise can enhance the development of new brain cells in the adult brain, a process called adult neurogenesis. These newborn brain cells play an important role in learning and memory. A new study has determined that mice ...

Umbilical cells help eye's neurons connect

November 24, 2015

Cells isolated from human umbilical cord tissue have been shown to produce molecules that help retinal neurons from the eyes of rats grow, connect and survive, according to Duke University researchers working with Janssen ...

Brain connections predict how well you can pay attention

November 24, 2015

During a 1959 television appearance, Jack Kerouac was asked how long it took him to write his novel On The Road. His response – three weeks – amazed the interviewer and ignited an enduring myth that the book was composed ...

No cable spaghetti in the brain

November 24, 2015

Our brain is a mysterious machine. Billions of nerve cells are connected such that they store information as efficiently as books are stored in a well-organized library. To this date, many details remain unclear, for instance ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.