| Nov 14, 2011, 12.49PM IST
abuse ups stroke risk in kids
abused girl child more prone to stroke (Thinkstock photos/Getty Images)
who have been sexually or physically abused may be more vulnerable to heart attacks and strokes as adults.
study conducted by Brigham University found that girls who experienced repeated episodes of forced sex in childhood or adolescence
had a 62 per cent higher risk of cardiovascular disease as adults.
physical abuse in childhood or adolescence was associated with a 45 per cent increased risk of cardiovascular events. Mild
to moderate physical or sexual abuse was not associated with increased risk.
single biggest factor explaining the link between severe child abuse and adult cardio disease was the tendency of abused girls
to have gained more weight throughout adolescence and into adulthood," said Janet Rich-Edwards, according to a Brigham statement.
associate professor in medicine Brigham University and Women's Hospital in Boston, led the study.
researchers studied the associations of child and adolescent abuse with confirmed heart attacks and strokes from 1989 to 2007
among 67,102 women in the Nurses' Health Study II.
percent reported forced sexual activity during childhood and adolescence and nine percent reported severe physical abuse.
who experience abuse need to take special care of their physical and emotional well-being to reduce their risk of chronic
disease," Rich-Edwards said.
These findings were presented at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions 2011.