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Stroke Risk Spikes In Healthy Adults Who Don't Get Enough Sleep

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the use-this-fact-in-salary-negotiations dept.

Medicine 70

hessian writes "Attention, busy middle-aged folks. You may be healthy and thin, but if you habitually sleep less than six hours a night, you still could be boosting your risk of a stroke. That's the surprising conclusion of a new study being presented Monday at SLEEP 2012, the annual meeting of the nation's sleep experts."

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first stroke! (0, Offtopic)

jefe7777 (411081) | more than 2 years ago | (#40294433)

fs

Re:first stroke! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40294445)

jkasdfk jaksdfj a jifi sdfjkaiej jkjkda kjl;adfkwejsdf;kl ;ajfk ;jkasdfjk;lsdfajsdfajk jsadfjklsdfa jksdfa!!!

Re:first stroke! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40299045)

That could have been clever if you'd only used characters from one side of the keyboard!

Re:first stroke! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40306477)

C'mon, offtopic??? Mod this Funny.

captcha: "biopsies".

Damn (1)

Rainbowdash (2645097) | more than 2 years ago | (#40294467)

Time to cut back on that gaming all nighters once you hit 30 then. Need to get as many as possible until then!

Re:Damn (5, Funny)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 2 years ago | (#40294547)

Time to cut back on that gaming all nighters once you hit 30 then.
Need to get as many as possible until then!

But only if you have a normal Body Mass Index (BMI).

FTFA

In people who fell into normal weight categories -- a body mass index of 18.5 to nearly 25 -- those who reported sleeping less than six hours a night were at about 4.5 times greater risk of developing stroke symptoms than whose who slept seven and eight hours a night. Surprisingly, that increase wasn't apparent in overweight or obese people who slept less.

The increased stroke risk ONLY OCCURRED IN NORMALLY SIZED PATIENTS

The application of this study to the Slashdot population should be obvious. Not to worry.

Re:Damn (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 2 years ago | (#40294681)

Probably because the risk increase from being overweight was more than risk increase from not sleeping.

Re:Damn (1)

Coisiche (2000870) | more than 2 years ago | (#40294735)

The increased stroke risk ONLY OCCURRED IN NORMALLY SIZED PATIENTS

Did get me wondering if stroke risk between USA and Europe is significantly different but there's probably just too many other lifestyle differences for an accurate comparison.

Re:Damn (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40297663)

Have you people failed to read the brochures provided when your Wi-Fi electric meters were installed?

Do not interrupt sleep while your RFID DRM Memory Audit Chip (most likely installed with your last flu shot) is being polled to see what you heard and watched during the previous day.

- - - - -
7 of 9 Tertiary Adjunct of Unimatrix 001

Re:Damn (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40294803)

The increased stroke risk ONLY OCCURRED IN NORMALLY SIZED PATIENTS

Never mind all that. The real gem is this:

those who reported sleeping less than six hours a night were at about 4.5 times greater risk of developing stroke symptoms...

So they didn't actually measure how much sleep the subjects got. They just took their word on it. Given that some people will overestimate or underestimate their sleep, this could just mean that the people who tend to underreport their sleep are the same people who tend to have strokes.

Basically, the study is useless.

Re:Damn (1)

Rainbowdash (2645097) | more than 2 years ago | (#40306281)

Luckily I sleep 12 hours every night(read: day)

Re:Damn (1)

ignavus (213578) | more than 2 years ago | (#40307783)

So they didn't actually measure how much sleep the subjects got. They just took their word on it. Given that some people will overestimate or underestimate their sleep, this could just mean that the people who tend to underreport their sleep are the same people who tend to have strokes.

Basically, the study is useless.

Not really. As long as you are prone to exaggerating the amount of sleep you get, you'll be OK.

Re:Damn (2)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 2 years ago | (#40295553)

I had an uncle who died of stroke at age 28. Don't wait until you're thirty to get sleep. Not enough sleep has a few other bad effects, too, one of which is aging rapidly. Those people you see who are 40 and look 60? They smoke and don't get enough sleep.

Re:Damn (1)

cyberchondriac (456626) | more than 2 years ago | (#40296249)

Reminds me of the people who say, "I'll sleep when I'm dead". Yes, yes you will.. and probably sooner than you think.

Re:Damn (1)

camperslo (704715) | more than 2 years ago | (#40298105)

I wonder how many of those who had strokes had high blood pressure, or other risk factors not mentioned (not sleeping while high?). Knowing how many smoked, did drugs, had high sodium diets, etc. might give more meaning to the numbers. Since strokes aren't always fatal, blood pressure checks comparing survivors with the general population might be statistically useful. Do people that get laid before sleep have fewer strokes? They probably sleep better. I guess that might count as having more exercise too?

Drug stores sell some very low cost wrist-band blood pressure meters. Those who don't have it done with a routine medical check up might at least consider getting one of those. Some people can sense when their pressure is up, since in some it brings on ringing in the ears.

I believe that some of the people that are described as having a stroke may have actually had an aneurysm, something a bit different that can also lead to bleeding in the brain. Many with that condition don't know it is there, although some experience headaches.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aneurism [wikipedia.org]

Re:Damn (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 2 years ago | (#40308109)

Well, the study didn't say that sleeping more lessens the chances of stroke. It could be that the factors that cause stroke also cause one to get less sleep. If that were the case, lack of sleep would still be related to stroke, even though there would be no direct causation between them. Still, it's been my experience (sample size of one, I know) that not getting enough sleep does adversely affect health. Mine, anyway. It also affects my cognitive abilities (this has been studied and the studies confirm it).

Snooze fest (1)

madhatter256 (443326) | more than 2 years ago | (#40294515)

The SLEEP 2012 was a total snooze fest.

Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40294583)

Yawn...

Stupid sleep lobby (5, Funny)

Nursie (632944) | more than 2 years ago | (#40294611)

Always trying to get us to sleep more, they only want you to sleep more so they can keep making their fat profits at your expense.

Wake up sheeple!

Re:Stupid sleep lobby (1)

virgnarus (1949790) | more than 2 years ago | (#40295711)

BUY! SLEEP! OBEY!

Re:Stupid sleep lobby (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40296127)

Don't you mean... sleeple?

Re:Stupid sleep lobby (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40298095)

That downtime is when the Glenn Beck flys a government stealth drone over the continental US to deliver your Web history to Facebook so they can correlate it and sell it to Google.

Good thing I'm using that browser plugin.

Late night stroke (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40294623)

Perhaps it's time I stopped having that late night stroke and got some sleep instead.

increase wasn't apparent in overweight (4, Interesting)

EzInKy (115248) | more than 2 years ago | (#40294625)

Interesting! Could it be that using the BMI as a determining factor in who is healthy and who is not is in itself a flawed concept? Perhaps the amount of sleep needed is related to caloric intake, and the caloric intake necessary to maintain a BMI less than 25 is not sufficient to avoid stroke? Certainly there is more here than meets the eye. I'd strongly recommend much further study before anyone changes their lifestyles due to this study.

Re:increase wasn't apparent in overweight (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40294741)

I think it is about time to pork out on some everything.
Fatness, here I come!

Re:increase wasn't apparent in overweight (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40294755)

No, it just means if you're a lard bucket the heart attack will get you first.

Re:increase wasn't apparent in overweight (2)

MadKeithV (102058) | more than 2 years ago | (#40294777)

Interesting! Could it be that using the BMI as a determining factor in who is healthy and who is not is in itself a flawed concept?

Like one of the above posters said: I'd put my bets on high BMI already being such a big factor in strokes that it drowns out the lack of sleep effect.

Re:increase wasn't apparent in overweight (1)

EzInKy (115248) | more than 2 years ago | (#40295015)

But this is serious stuff! What do I tell my patients? That if you are 6'0 and weigh 185lbs you will live on average 70yrs but if you are 6'0 180lbs you will live on average 72yrs? And then, if you die at 70 you will be mentally and physically intact but at 72 you won't? Seriously, I'm just looking for some hard numbers and data here.

Re:increase wasn't apparent in overweight (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40296587)

The evenness of the cutoff's in standard BMI interpretation (nice, round numbers like 25 and 30) is a really good clue that these are not scientifically-validated numbers. There are a lot of studies on BMI vs. mortality; here's a peer-reviewed article in the Canadian Medical Association Journal [www.cmaj.ca] , and a crucial slide [www.cmaj.ca] . Note that the model-derived curve supports the usual interpretation that BMI in the 18.5-25 range is optimal; the bars showing actual data, though, show that BMI between 27 and 28 is optimal.

A summary recommendations for your patients: for men, BMI of 23-30 looks healthy. For women, BMI of 18.5-30 looks healthy.

For all patients (as I am sure you already know): exercise! The data showing health benefits from even moderate exercise are compelling, and exercising more is better for you, within a very broad range.

Re:increase wasn't apparent in overweight (2)

Rich.Miller.6 (1602871) | more than 2 years ago | (#40296651)

The evenness of the cutoff's in standard BMI interpretation (nice, round numbers like 25 and 30) is a really good clue that these are not scientifically-validated numbers. There are a lot of studies on BMI vs. mortality; here's a peer-reviewed article in the Canadian Medical Association Journal [www.cmaj.ca] , and a crucial slide [www.cmaj.ca] . Note that the model-derived curve supports the usual interpretation that BMI in the 18.5-25 range is optimal; the bars showing actual data, though, show that BMI between 27 and 28 is optimal.

A summary recommendations for your patients: for men, BMI of 23-30 looks healthy. For women, BMI of 18.5-30 looks healthy.

For all patients (as I am sure you already know): exercise! The data showing health benefits from even moderate exercise are compelling, and exercising more is better for you, within a very broad range.

[Sorry - I just accidantally posted the text above as Anonymous Coward - not my intention.]

Re:increase wasn't apparent in overweight (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40295195)

For argument lets say as an overweight individual your risk of stroke might be 10% and a "normal" person's risk is 1%. If an obese person doesn't get enough sleep their stroke risk stays the same at 10% (ie. no increase) whereas a normal person has their risk increase to 2%.

Now do you get it?

Re:increase wasn't apparent in overweight (1)

EzInKy (115248) | more than 2 years ago | (#40295473)

Not really, because you haven't cited data, and the methodology used to support it, that demonstrates that a person 0.1% over the BMI is at more risk than a person who is normal BMI and vice-a-versa. This a life alterating subject being discussed here so please treat it a such. Maybe first would should start with why a BMI of 24.9 is more healthy than one of 25, and then continue with why a BMI of 18.5 is more healthy than one of 25? Really, all I'm asking for is the date to support the argument being made.

Re:increase wasn't apparent in overweight (1)

Mashiki (184564) | more than 2 years ago | (#40295835)

Of course using the BMI to determine anything is a flawed concept. The BMI in itself is not scientific, and is based on pseudoscience, working off ~130ish year old models for something that it didn't even work for properly in the first place.

Re:increase wasn't apparent in overweight (2)

Maxo-Texas (864189) | more than 2 years ago | (#40296407)

Yes. There is such a thing as "too thin".

Body systems shut down.

Not getting enough fat in your diet does bad things to you.

Re:increase wasn't apparent in overweight (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | more than 2 years ago | (#40298059)

Or not caloric intake per se, but perhaps e.g. protective fatty acids, which are usually found in trace amounts in western diets, so a large caloric intake is required to get sufficient quantities. Or any number of other possibilities.

The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds new discoveries, is not "Eureka!" but, "that's funny." - Isaac Asimov

Versus segmented sleep? (5, Interesting)

macraig (621737) | more than 2 years ago | (#40294761)

TFA, at least, doesn't even mention segmented sleep [goo.gl] or how that might alter this alleged dynamic. Since there seems to be irrefutable evidence that the Industrial Age is the specific cause of this change in our sleep patterns and a prescriptive (if subconscious) effort to pigeonhole our sleep into one neat temporal compartment, why do these supposed experts continue to promote the Industrial Age myth of a single eight-hour sleep cycle? Why don't they consider the possibility that it might be our efforts as a civilization to force our sleep patterns into a single tightly regimented box that is causing the increased risk of stroke and other problems?

Re:Versus segmented sleep? (2, Funny)

JustOK (667959) | more than 2 years ago | (#40294801)

sleeping outside the box...

Re:Versus segmented sleep? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40295461)

Snoopy slept outside the box before it was cool. (on top of, to be precise)

Re:Versus segmented sleep? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40296237)

why do these supposed experts continue to promote the Industrial Age myth of a single eight-hour sleep cycle? Why don't they consider the possibility that it might be our efforts as a civilization to force our sleep patterns into a single tightly regimented box that is causing the increased risk of stroke and other problems?

Because not having a single eight-hour sleep cycle would be highly inconvenient in a post-industrial age, and therefore changing it is not an option, whether it affects your health or not.

Re:Versus segmented sleep? (2)

joh (27088) | more than 2 years ago | (#40298897)

Because not having a single eight-hour sleep cycle would be highly inconvenient in a post-industrial age, and therefore changing it is not an option, whether it affects your health or not.

It was (and is) always an option for me. I often sleep a few hours at night and then another few hours in the afternoon. Gives me a nice stretch of quiet, undisturbed time through the first half of the night and I feel fresh all the time I'm awake. Never could stand the 16h+ stretch over the day since I was mindlessly tired half of the time anyway.

Link to more detail? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40294871)

Less sleep usually correlated with more stress for me, which I didn't see mentioned in the news blurb. Sleeping more won't necessarily make that stress disappear (and may exacerbate it).

Also, 4.5x more risk in a population with a very small baseline risk can be misleading?

Causation and Correlation Strikes Again (1)

Siberwulf (921893) | more than 2 years ago | (#40294935)

FTFA

"Attention, busy middle-aged folks. You may be healthy and thin, but if you habitually sleep less than six hours a night, you still could be boosting your risk of a stroke."

That sure grabs a headline, but seriously. What proof do you have that that is the cause? What if there's something broken elsewhere, that we don't know about? That's not nearly as sensational enough for Mainstream Media, though. :(

Hmmm... (3, Interesting)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#40294937)

At least for the purpose of argument, I'm assuming that the statistical epidemiology is accurate; but that leaves me very curious indeed about what the mechanism is.

I wouldn't have expected getting more or less sleep to affect the structural integrity of some unlucky blood vessel in your brain. Are there any clues about why such a dramatic effect might occur?

Re:Hmmm... (3, Interesting)

ShanghaiBill (739463) | more than 2 years ago | (#40295847)

Are there any clues about why such a dramatic effect might occur?

I have high blood pressure, and monitor it daily. If I don't get enough sleep my BP is higher. If I pull an all nighter (get zero sleep) my BP will go up by 20 points. For someone who already has high BP, that is enough to cause a stroke.

This is nonsense (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40295033)

I am on 96 hours without any sleep. I am in no danger of a str-aghhhh!

Re:This is nonsense (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40297943)

I am on 96 hours without any sleep. I am in no danger of a str-hhnnnnnggggg!

FTFY.

Little biased wouldn't you say (1)

gubers33 (1302099) | more than 2 years ago | (#40295045)

I mean this is a study by a bunch of guys who are promoting sleep, and they are saying more sleep is better for you because it can prevent strokes. Hmmmmm

Re:Little biased wouldn't you say (1)

uncqual (836337) | more than 2 years ago | (#40299093)

This study was probably sponsored by mattress companies.

However, I've been told that there are other activities that wear out mattresses more quickly than sleeping -- perhaps their corporate research dollars would be better spent on studies which find that those activities are good for your health.

(Although, rumor has it that at least one party to such activities tends to go to sleep quickly thereafter -- so perhaps this study is complementary to such additional studies.)

Of course, the mattress companies would still be left with the problem of how to arrange for /. readers to have the opportunity to engage in such activities.

I'm on borrowed time (1)

Centurix (249778) | more than 2 years ago | (#40295177)

That must be a quiet meeting.

Weight vs risk (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40295179)

In people who fell into normal weight categories -- a body mass index of 18.5 to nearly 25 -- those who reported sleeping less than six hours a night were at about 4.5 times greater risk of developing stroke symptoms than whose who slept seven and eight hours a night. Surprisingly, that increase wasn't apparent in overweight or obese people who slept less

So what it is saying is that your best move is to pack on the pounds.

And why can't they sleep? (4, Insightful)

fluor2 (242824) | more than 2 years ago | (#40295181)

This is a chicken-and-egg mystery. Concluding that the health risk is because of bad sleep is just a statistically qualified conclusion.

People often cannot sleep because of a lot of different problems. Most of them are diffuse, and sadly often treated by medicines that just help you sleep or similar.

Finding the cause of why you can't sleep is very time consuming and often impossible by current technology, unless you believe Dr House is a representative of the average doctor.

The heart is a muscle like any other; it needs to have a break. This is called sleep and should last at least 5-6 hours every day. When you cannot sleep, it might be because the circulation of blood is somehow hindered, or something else sending warning signals to our brain that something is wrong. Thus one gets alert and one cannot sleep.

If one has trouble sleeping over a long period, the heart muscle gets tired. A very dangerous situation likely to end in a stroke.

(Mind you, I am not a doctor.)

Re:And why can't they sleep? (1)

daem0n1x (748565) | more than 2 years ago | (#40296569)

A stroke is in the brain, not the heart. And what does sleep have to do with resting the heart? It keeps beating when you sleep, did you know?

Re:And why can't they sleep? (1)

fluor2 (242824) | more than 2 years ago | (#40296991)

Nice. You reacted.

There are vast studies of the pulse lowering when you sleep. Thus heart resting.

There are also studies that shows that people with a higher pulse than their normal average is more likely having a death risk if they do not manage to get their pulse lowered to their previous average.

Re:And why can't they sleep? (1)

cusco (717999) | more than 2 years ago | (#40304425)

People sleep laying down, making it easier for the heart to move blood around. The gravity gradient is not easy to overcome with channels as narrow as blood vessels. The body is less active during sleep, meaning that there is less need for blood to be moved quickly as well.

Spikes? (1)

c0d3g33k (102699) | more than 2 years ago | (#40295273)

So if you reduce your sleep time even more, the risk of stroke decreases?

yes but (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40295363)

all the coffee we drink offsets the odds of a stroke :P

Thank God (1)

Chrisq (894406) | more than 2 years ago | (#40295397)

Stroke Risk Spikes In Healthy Adults Who Don't Get Enough Sleep

Thank God I'm an unhealthy adult who doesn't get enough sleep.

Lack of Sleep can cause something else too (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40295845)

I want to mention that lack of sleep can also cause a condition named CSR in your eyes. After sleeping less than 6 hrs for 3 years and then few nights with 4 hr sleep, I got this in my eyes. Then I learnt that there is no cure for this and it can lead to vision loss. Moreover it is mainly reported by the people who have better then average eyesight. Since then I try to take 8 hr sleep and its gone. I hop it does not come back.
So, slashdotter be careful.

Smoking (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40295867)

Did they correct for smoking? Skinny people who stay up all night generally smoke

pick your poison (1)

tbonefrog (739501) | more than 2 years ago | (#40296763)

A few days ago http://www.webmd.com/alzheimers/news/20120607/coffee-may-help-turn-tide-on-alzheimers-disease [webmd.com] came out. so sleep and get alzheimers or stay awake and get a stroke... I'd consider skydiving lessons...

Re:pick your poison (1)

uncqual (836337) | more than 2 years ago | (#40299141)

Skip the lessons and move directly to solo skydiving w/o training -- your strategy will probably be more effective that way.

Coffee (1)

Nethemas the Great (909900) | more than 2 years ago | (#40297487)

That's OK because I drink lots of coffee [webmd.com] to combat lack of sleep.

Why they always look at secondary effects? (1)

gatesstillborg (2633899) | more than 2 years ago | (#40297627)

The main cause of stroke is high blood pressure. They should phrase it "sleep dep increases blood pressure". I guess they get more media bang for the buck if they say stroke.

Re:Why they always look at secondary effects? (1)

EzInKy (115248) | more than 2 years ago | (#40305333)

The main cause of stroke is lack of blood to the brain. Reducing blood pressure can actually cause a stroke because it reduces the cerebral perfusion pressure.

Now that... (1)

toriver (11308) | more than 2 years ago | (#40297647)

... sounds like something anyone could lose sleep over.

Let's panic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40298071)

Let's panic. That's the proper way to respond to studies, right?

SLEEP and USENIX both at Boston Sheraton this week (1)

doubleyou (89602) | more than 2 years ago | (#40299927)

Is someone from Usenix sneaking into the Sleep panels? Come-on, fess up... ;-)

preventing stroke with herbal (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#40302977)

we..can prevent stroke by consumting herbal medicine, from mangosteen juice...see more in www.obatherbaljempolan.com

Four hours for a man (1)

Pf0tzenpfritz (1402005) | more than 2 years ago | (#40308893)

Four for a man, five for a woman - and six for an idiot
Napoleon Bonaparte

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