Closing the Gap: The IGLOO Story
What if living independently longer was as simple as keeping your blood pressure down? Wake Forest School of Medicine was a key contributor in the findings that demonstrated lowering blood pressure to below 130 mm HG (the top number in a blood pressure reading) in people, especially older people, can reduce the risk of heart attack, heart failure, stroke and death by 30-40%. Expanding on these findings, our researchers published more in 2019 from the SPRINT MIND study, showing that such a reduction in blood pressure can also reduce the risk of memory loss (early dementia) or combined early or late dementia by almost 20%2—the first intervention in history that clearly showed efficacy in reducing the risk for memory loss.
“We all knew lower blood pressure control had a significant impact on long-term health but it had never been scientifically validated,” explains Jeff Williamson, MD, director of the Center for Healthcare Innovation (CHI) at Wake Forest School of Medicine, section chief of Gerontology at Wake Forest Baptist Health and a lead scientist on the publication.
But this is only the beginning of the story.