B vitamins may not help after stroke

Feb. 26, 2013 at 10:54 PM

HONOLULU, Feb. 26 (UPI) -- Taking B vitamins daily may not prevent cognitive decline in people who have had a stroke or transient ischemic attack, U.S. researchers say.

Stroke is associated with an increased risk of cognitive decline and impairment, and the deterioration of cognitive functions such as memory or thought processing.

Researchers studied whether treatment with B vitamins would help prevent cognitive decline following a stroke.

More than 8,000 recent survivors of strokes or transient ischemic attacks, also called mini-strokes, were randomly assigned to take either a B vitamin pill consisting of 2 milligrams of folic acid, 25 milligrams of B6 and 500 micrograms of B12, or a placebo daily.

About 2,200 patients took a mini-mental state test of their cognition at the study's start and every six months after for a median of 2.8 years.

The study found no notable difference in the incidences of cognitive decline or impairment among participants taking B vitamins compared with the placebo.

The findings were presented at the American Stroke Association's International Stroke Conference in Honolulu.

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