People with a History of Herpes Infection Show Twice the Rate of Dementia: Study

Herpes Infection linked with Double Dementia RiskA recent study from Uppsala University suggests that people who have experienced the herpes virus at some point might face double the risk of developing dementia compared to those who haven’t had the infection. This study, which involved 1,000 70-year-olds from Uppsala over 15 years, reinforces previous findings regarding the potential link between herpes and dementia.

Published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, the research revealed that individuals who had contracted the herpes simplex virus during their lives were twice as likely to develop dementia compared to those who hadn’t. The herpes simplex virus is widespread, with up to 80 percent of adults in Sweden possibly carrying it. Although the infection persists throughout life, its symptoms may vary over time, and some individuals may never experience any symptoms.


Erika Vestin, a medical student at Uppsala University, highlighted the significance of this study, emphasizing that the participants were of similar age, enhancing the reliability of the results by minimizing the influence of age-related factors on dementia development.

Dementia affects around 55 million people globally, with advanced age and the presence of the apolipoprotein ε4 risk gene already established as risk factors. Previous research had explored the potential connection between the herpes simplex virus and dementia, a link now substantiated by this study.

Vestin expressed excitement about the confirmation of previous findings, noting a growing body of evidence implicating the herpes simplex virus as a dementia risk factor. The study’s findings underscore the importance of investigating whether existing antiviral medications for herpes could mitigate dementia risk and the potential for developing new vaccines.

According to Vestin, these results may propel dementia research towards early intervention using commonly available antiviral drugs or even preventive measures to stave off the disease. This study sheds light on the importance of further exploration into the relationship between herpes and dementia, potentially offering avenues for more effective management and prevention strategies.

Author Bio

Devon Andre has been involved in the health and dietary supplement industry for a number of years. Devon has written extensively for Bel Marra Health. He has a Bachelor of Forensic Science from the University of Windsor, and went on to complete a Juris Doctor from the University of Pittsburgh. Devon is keenly aware of trends and new developments in the area of health and wellness. He embraces an active lifestyle combining diet, exercise and healthy choices. By working to inform readers of the options available to them, he hopes to improve their health and quality of life.