Having extremely low cholesterol may increase the risk for stroke, a new study suggests.
Researchers found that very low LDL cholesterol and very low triglycerides are associated with an increased risk for haemorrhagic stroke.
For the report, in Neurology, researchers reviewed data on total cholesterol, LDL, HDL and triglycerides for 27,937 women. During an average follow-up of 19 years, there were 137 haemorrhagic strokes.
They found that women with LDL levels below 70 were more than twice as likely to have a haemorrhagic stroke as those with readings between 100 and 129.
Women with triglyceride readings below 75 had twice the risk for stroke compared with those with levels above 156.
There was no association of stroke with HDL or total cholesterol. The study controlled for hypertension, smoking, physical activity, body mass index and other factors.
Individuals with these low levels are often considered low risk, lead author, Pamela M. Rist, an assistant professor of medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, noted. She added, however, that that doesn’t mean they should ignore the other known haemorrhagic stroke risk factors such as hypertension and smoking.
REFERENCE: Rist et al: Lipid levels and the risk of hemorrhagic stroke among women; https://n.neurology.org/content/early/2019/04/10/WNL.0000000000007454