Heart defects in childhood may increase risk of early dementia

People born with heart defects could face a greater risk of developing dementia before the age of 65 years, says a new study. Thanks to better newborn and childhood medical care, more people born with heart defects survive into adulthood.

There are many studies that show that people born with heart defects have a higher risk of neuro-developmental problems in childhood like epilepsy and autism. This is the first time that a study has looked at the potential for dementia much later into adult life.

The study shows that in Denmark people born with heart defects have a 60% higher risk of dementia from any cause, including vascular dementia, Alzheimer's disease and others.

The study does not mean that every person born with a heart defect will develop dementia.

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