Are premature babies at greater risk for a stroke later in life?

1 answer | Last updated: Oct 13, 2016
Trici asked...

My mom died of a stoke and I had an uncle die not long after my mom. Both were 7 month born babies. Does this have anything to do with who will have higher chance to have a stoke. I just had a granddaughter born at 7 months and I'm really worried. Thank you.

Expert Answers

James Castle, M.D. is a neurologist at NorthShore University HealthSystem (affiliated with The University of Chicago) and an expert on strokes.

To my knowledge, there is absolutely no correlation with being born premature and having a stroke later in life. That said, strokes can run in families, and it would be a good idea for your family to check in with their respective doctors regarding a screening. If your mother and uncle both died from "ischemic" strokes - the more common type - then a check of blood pressure, cholesterol, and diabetes screen on a regular basis would be a good idea. Further, if they were both relatively young when they had their strokes, it would be a good idea to check on any possible genetic clotting disorders. If their strokes were "hemorrhagic" - the less common - then a screen of your arteries and a tight control of your blood pressure would be in order. Also, smoking is out of the question in someone with such a family history.