Stroke Predictor in the Eyes?

Stroke Predictor in the Eyes?

Reported March 04, 2010

(Ivanhoe Newswire) — Researchers may have found a new predictor of a person’s stroke risk: the eyes. A new study suggests having a shingles infection in the eye could increase your chances of becoming a stroke victim.

Ocular shingles is an infection of the eye and the skin around the eye caused by the same virus that causes the chickenpox. About 10 to 20 percent of all shingles cases are ocular shingles.

The study compared the likelihood of stroke in people diagnosed with ocular shingles and those without the infection. Researchers found people with shingles were four-and-a-half times more likely to have a stroke than those without shingles. The results were not affected by other conditions such as age, gender, high blood pressure, diabetes or medications.



The results showed people with shingles were more likely to have an ischemic stroke, often caused by a blood clot, as opposed to a hemorrhagic stroke, or bleeding in the brain.

Researchers say further research needs to be done to look at stroke risk factors, such as cigarette smoking.

Source: Neurology, published online March 3, 2010