BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE-: White matter hyperintensities and MRI-defined brain infarcts (BIs) have individually been related to stroke, dementia, and mortality in population-based studies, mainly in older people. Their significance in middle-aged community-dwelling persons and the relative importance of these associations remain unclear. We simultaneously assessed the relation of white matter hyperintensities and BI with incident stroke, mild cognitive impairment, dementia, and mortality in a middle-aged community-based cohort. METHODS-: A total of 2229 Framingham Offspring Study participants aged 62±9 years underwent volumetric brain MRI and neuropsychological testing (1999 to 2005). Incident stroke, dementia, and mortality were prospectively ascertained and for 1694 participants in whom a second neuropsychological assessment was performed (2005 to 2007), incident mild cognitive impairment was evaluated. All outcomes were related to white matter hyperintensities volume (WMHV), age-specific extensive WMHV and BI adjusting for age and gender. RESULTS-: Extensive WMHV and BI were associated with an increased risk of stroke (hazard ratio [HR]=2.28, 95% CI: 1.02 to 5.13; HR=2.84, 95% CI: 1.32 to 6.10). WMHV, extensive WMHV, and BI were associated with an increased risk of dementia (HR=2.22, 95% CI: 1.32 to 3.72; HR=3.97, 95% CI: 1.10 to 14.30; HR=6.12, 95% CI: 1.82 to 20.54) independently of vascular risk factors and interim stroke. WMHV and extensive WMHV were associated with incident amnestic mild cognitive impairment in participants aged ≥60 years only (OR=2.47, 95% CI: 1.31 to 4.66 and OR=1.49, 95% CI: 1.14 to 1.97). WMHV and extensive WMHV were associated with an increased risk of death (HR=1.38, 95% CI: 1.13 to 1.69; HR=2.27, 95% CI: 1.41 to 3.65) independent of vascular risk factors and of interim stroke and dementia. CONCLUSIONS-: In a large community-based sample of middle-aged adults, BI predicted an increased risk of stroke and dementia independent of vascular risk factors. White matter hyperintensities portended an increased risk of stroke, amnestic mild cognitive impairment, dementia, and death independent of vascular risk factors and interim vascular events.
- Cerebrovascular disease/stroke
- Computerized tomography and magnetic resonance imaging
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
- Clinical Neurology
- Advanced and Specialized Nursing