They're Not Kidding When They Say `Blue Monday'

Talk about Monday-morning blahs. In a study, researchers at Boston University have found that strokes are twice as likely to occur between 6 a.m. and noon than at other times of the day. And hemorrhagic strokes--caused by a broken blood vessel in the brain--strike most often on Mondays.

The data come from the latest update to the 42-year-old Framingham Study. Since 1950, BU and the National Institutes of Health have been monitoring the health of 5,070 residents of Framingham, Mass., who were free of cardiovascular disease when the study began. Subsequently, 633 suffered strokes. Of the 382 cases in which the time of the strokes could be determined, more than half occurred on Mondays.

Margaret Kelly-Hayes, a registered nurse and member of the Framingham Study team, says that knowing when people are most prone to strokes could help neurologists better understand the risk factors and behaviors that precede and contribute to the often fatal attacks.

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