Introduction: Stroke is an established risk factor for all-cause dementia, though meta-analyses are needed to quantify this risk.
Methods: We searched Medline, PsycINFO, and Embase for studies assessing prevalent or incident stroke versus a no-stroke comparison group and the risk of all-cause dementia. Random effects meta-analysis was used to pool adjusted estimates across studies, and meta-regression was used to investigate potential effect modifiers.
Results: We identified 36 studies of prevalent stroke (1.9 million participants) and 12 studies of incident stroke (1.3 million participants). For prevalent stroke, the pooled hazard ratio for all-cause dementia was 1.69 (95% confidence interval: 1.49-1.92; P < .00001; I2 = 87%). For incident stroke, the pooled risk ratio was 2.18 (95% confidence interval: 1.90-2.50; P < .00001; I2 = 88%). Study characteristics did not modify these associations, with the exception of sex which explained 50.2% of between-study heterogeneity for prevalent stroke.
Discussion: Stroke is a strong, independent, and potentially modifiable risk factor for all-cause dementia.
Copyright © 2018 the Alzheimer's Association. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.