UCI Logo Previously, it was believed that stroke-related injury, hypertension or neuro – degenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s can cause bleeding in the brain. This investigation however has a different tale to tell. A recent research undertaken by the UC Irvine scientists suggests that cerebral microbleeds are highly frequent in the aging brain. The findings were ascertained after examining deep regions of the brain under a microscope.

Postmortem brain specimens of 33 individuals, ranging between the age group of 71 to 105 years with no history of stroke were scrutinized throughout the research. Around 22 cases of cerebral microbleeds apparently had evidence of bleeding in small areas. A substantially higher rate of incidence appeared as compared to that reported in prior MRI studies. Earlier investigations have highlighted that microbleeds may take place in 18 percent people between 60 and 69 and 38 percent above 80 years.

Medications like aspirin interfering with platelets and blood clotting are known to be linked with microbleeds. In the current research it was suggested that aspirin and other platelet drugs have a different effect on the aging brain than younger brains. Dr. Mark Fisher and colleagues assume that though a specific blood-brain barrier does exist, leakiness of brain blood vessels rises with age. All the examined regions of bleeding analyzed in the research were probably not life-threatening.

The research is published online in the journal Stroke.