Exercise 'improves memory and cognition after stroke'

1st October 2012

People who have had a stroke can improve their memory and cognition through exercise, it has been revealed.

Undertaking just six months of exercise is able to improve memory, language, thinking and judgement issues by almost 50 per cent, according to research presented at the Canadian Stroke Congress.

It was found that the proportion of stroke patients with mild cognitive impairment, at the least, dropped from 66 per cent to 37 per cent during a research study detailing the impact of exercise on the brain.

"Significant improvements" were found in overall brain function when the program ended, with the most improvement being seen in attention, concentration, planning and organisation.

Lead research Susan Marzolini, from the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute, said: "People who have cognitive deficits after stroke have a threefold risk of mortality, and they're more likely to be institutionalised.

"If we can improve cognition through exercise, which also has many physical benefits, then this should become a standard of care for people following stroke."

Posted by Jeanette Royston

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