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Leisure-Time Physical Activity Linked to Lower SAH Risk

Protective association for LTPA persisted in all age, hypertension groups; was stronger for smokers

MONDAY, July 1, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Leisure-time physical activity (LTPA) is associated with reduced risk of aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH), according to a study published online June 25 in Scientific Reports.

Joni V. Lindbohm, M.D., Ph.D., from the University of Helsinki in Finland, and colleagues examined how different types of physical activity relate to SAH risk. A total of 65,521 population-based individuals were followed prospectively from medical and autopsy registries from 1972 to 2014, and 543 incident SAHs were detected. LTPA, occupational physical activity (OPA), and commuting physical activity (CPA) levels were measured at baseline.

The researchers found that in men and women, every 30-minute increase in weekly LTPA was correlated with a linear decrease in SAH risk (hazard ratio, 0.95; 95 percent confidence interval, 0.9 to 1). There was also a decrease in SAH risk with CPA, but as participants retired, the correlation diminished. Elevated SAH risk was seen for individuals with moderate OPA (hazard ratio, 1.41; 95 percent confidence interval, 1.04 to 1.92) and high OPA (hazard ratio, 1.34; 95 percent confidence interval, 0.99 to 1.81). In all age and hypertension groups, the protective association of LTPA persisted, and it was even greater for current smokers (hazard ratio, 0.88; 95 percent confidence interval, 0.81 to 0.96) than non-smokers (difference, P = 0.04).

“Increasing commuting and leisure time physical activity could be a novel non-invasive preventive method for reducing the rupture risk of intracranial aneurysms,” the authors write.

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