Divorce linked to stroke in offspring

The University of Toronto study that looked at over 13,000 people in Canada found that over 2 per cent of those who witnessed their parents’ divorce during childhood had been diagnosed with a stroke at some point in their lives.

“We were very surprised that the association between parental divorce and stroke remained so strong even after we had adjusted for smoking, obesity, exercise and alcohol consumption,” said Esme Fuller-Thomson, co-author of the study.

For their research, Fuller-Thomson and colleagues analysed the data of 13,134 people who participated in a 2005 community health survey.

Of the total study respondents, it was found that 10.4 per cent had experienced parental divorce during childhood and 1.9 per cent reported that they had been diagnosed with a stroke at some point in their lives.

When adjusting for age, race and gender, the odds of stroke were approximately 2.2 times higher for those who had experienced their parents’ separation at very young age.

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