BACKGROUND: People with Parkinson's disease (PwP) are speculated to be at a low risk of cerebrovascular and cardiovascular disease (CVD) because they have fewer vascular risk factors and lower smoking rate. However, emerging evidence suggests that PwP are at higher risk of CVD, which introduces controversy to the notion that there is no association between Parkinson's disease (PD) and CVD. Hence, we conducted a meta-analysis to analyze the risk of CVD in PwP. METHODS: Electronic databases were searched using terms related to PD and CVD. Articles were included in the meta-analysis only if they employed clear diagnostic criteria for PD and CVD. The reference lists of the relevant articles were reviewed to identify eligible studies not found during the keyword search. RESULTS: The enrolled studies were categorized into case-control and cohort studies, and the former was further divided into postmortem (three) and clinical (four) studies. In the clinical case-control studies group, PD was more associated with CVD (OR: 2.89, 95% CI: 1.36-6.13). Three studies were enrolled in the cohort studies group, and the merged results demonstrated that PwP were at higher risk of CVD during the follow-up period (HR: 1.84, 95% CI: 1.34-2.54). CONCLUSION: PD is associated with CVD, which may be due to the shared pathogeneses between the two diseases or PD-related effects. PwP should be more aware of the risk of CVD despite having fewer traditional vascular risk factors.
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