Men’s stroke of luck

Herald Sun (Aust) February 28, 2010

The key to cutting men’s stroke risk could be down to a happy marriage. Happily married men are much less likely to suffer a stroke than their single or unhappily married friends, according to research. Single men and those in unsuccessful marriages were 64 per cent more likely to have a stroke than men in successful marriages. Scientists said having an unhappy marriage or being single was as big a risk to men’s chances of having a stroke as suffering from diabetes.

Their research followed more than 10,000 public servants who completed the Israeli Ischaemic Heart Disease Study in 1963. They tracked the men to 1997 to check their cause of death. In 1965, two years after the first study, the participants were asked to rate their marriages as successful or unsuccessful, or to say if they have never married. Dr Uri Goldbourt, of Tel Aviv University, said: “An analysis of the 3.6 per cent of men who had reported dissatisfaction in their marriage found the adjusted risk of a fatal stroke was 64 per cent higher, compared with men who considered their marriages very successful. “I had not expected that unsuccessful marriage would be of this statistical importance.”