High Blood Pressure and I.Q.

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Story Updated: Oct 5, 2012

Baby's I.Q. might be at risk.

If your Mother had high blood pressure when she was pregnant, it's possible that it impacted your IQ...and may even haunt you into old age.

That's the news from the journal Neurology.

Researchers in Finland reviewed medical records looking at the blood pressure readings from a group of pregnant women who delivered a total of 398 sons between 1934 and 1944.

Each male's cognitive thinking abilities were tested at age 20 and then again at about 69. Language skills, math reasoning and visual and spatial relationships were all measured.

When tested as seniors, the men with mothers who had high blood pressure during pregnancy scored more than four points lower than those who's mothers did not have high blood pressure. The same group also scored lower at age 20. Math abilities were most affected.

The researchers believe that these cognitive declines in old age could have originated in the womb...when the majority of the development of brain structure and function occurs.

I'm Dr. Cindy Haines of HealthDay TV, with the news doctors are reading, health news for healthier living.

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Excellus BlueCross BlueShield, a nonprofit independent licensee of the BlueCross BlueShield Association, is part of a family of companies that finances and delivers vital health care services to 1.8 million people across upstate New York. Excellus BlueCross BlueShield provides access to high-quality, affordable health coverage, including valuable health-related resources that our members use every day, such as cost-saving prescription drug discounts and wellness tracking tools in our Step Up program. To learn more, visit www.excellusbcbs.com