Brain artery diameters and risk of dementia and stroke

Jesus D. Melgarejo, Kursat Gurel, Cassidy Rose Compton, Minghua Liu, Vanessa Guzman, Stephanie Assuras, Bonnie E. Levin, Mitchell S.V. Elkind, M. Kamran Ikram, Maryam Kavousi, M. Arfan Ikram, Clinton Wright, Fabrice Crivello, Alexandre Laurent, Christophe Tzourio, Meike W. Vernooij, Tatjana Rundek, Zhen Yu Zhang, Daniel Bos, Jose Gutierrez*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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We tested the association of brain artery diameters with dementia and stroke risk in three distinct population-based studies using conventional T2-weighted brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) images.


 We included 8420 adults > 40 years old from three longitudinal population-based studies with brain MRI scans. We estimated and meta-analyzed the hazard ratios (HRs) of the brain and carotids and basilar diameters associated with dementia and stroke. 


Overall and carotid artery diameters > 95th percentile increased the risk for dementia by 1.74 (95% confidence interval [CI], 1.13–2.68) and 1.48 (95% CI, 1.12–1.96) fold, respectively. For stroke, meta-analyses yielded HRs of 1.59 (95% CI, 1.04–2.42) for overall arteries and 2.11 (95% CI, 1.45–3.08) for basilar artery diameters > 95th percentile. 


Individuals with dilated brain arteries are at higher risk for dementia and stroke, across distinct populations. Our findings underline the potential value of T2-weighted brain MRI-based brain diameter assessment in estimating the risk of dementia and stroke.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2497-2507
Number of pages11
JournalAlzheimer's and Dementia
Issue number4
Early online date8 Feb 2024
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2024

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Publisher Copyright:
© 2024 The Authors. Alzheimer's & Dementia published by Wiley Periodicals LLC on behalf of Alzheimer's Association.


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