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J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry. 1997 March; 62(3): 269–272.
PMCID: PMC1064157

Is there any evidence for a protective effect of antithrombotic medication on cognitive function in men at risk of cardiovascular disease? Some preliminary findings.


To explore whether antithrombotic medication may protect against cognitive decline, tests of verbal memory, attention, abstract reasoning, verbal fluency, and mental flexibility were administered to 405 men at risk of cardiovascular disease. These subjects were a subgroup of those who had been participating in a randomised double blind factorial trial of low dose aspirin (75 mg daily) and low intensity oral anticoagulation with warfarin (international normalised ratio of 1.5) at 35 general practices across the United Kingdom for at least five years, were at least 55 years old at trial entry, and had been randomly allocated to one of four groups: active warfarin and active aspirin, active warfarin and placebo aspirin, placebo warfarin and active aspirin, and double placebo. Verbal fluency and mental flexibility were significantly better in subjects taking antithrombotic medication than in subjects taking placebo. Aspirin may have contributed more than warfarin to any beneficial effect. These results provide tentative evidence that antithrombotic medication may protect cognitive function in men at risk of cardiovascular disease.

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Selected References

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