Inflammation biomarkers ‘can help determine stroke risk’

Scientists suggest testing for inflammationTwo biomarkers of inflammation could help indicate how likely it is that someone will suffer a stroke, according to new research.

Scientists at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston say that the two markers, known as CRP and Lp-PLA2, are signs of inflammation that may assist in classifying people whose precise risk level cannot be determined through traditional tests.

The researchers explain that to assess stroke risk, doctors first look at blood pressure, cholesterol, obesity, diabetes and physical activity.

By following this up with a test of inflammation biomarkers, the patients can be more accurately classified in groups such as low-risk, intermediate-risk and high-risk, they say.

“Someone may be falsely reassured that if they have a normal cholesterol, they don’t have an increased risk for stroke,” said Baylor professor Dr. Christie Ballantyne.

As part of the study, published in the journal Stroke, participants were reclassified after a test for inflammation, with 10 percent moving from the middle group to high-risk, 28 percent moving to low-risk and 33 percent of the high-risk individuals moving down to intermediate.

Oral chelation is one option for people who are looking to manage their artery health and minimize risk of stroke.