With all of the incredible advances in modern medicine, it’s easy to stumble into a false sense of safety where surgery is concerned. And your typical surgeon looking to pad their paycheck probably isn’t going to try to talk you out of a procedure… whether you really need it or not.
This cavalier approach comes at a cost—one that hits more than just your wallet. Because while elective surgery may look like a fast fix that’s low on risk and high on reward, the consequences to your body can be dire.
And the worst part? You may not even know about them until the damage is already done.
A silent complication
Canadian researchers recruited more than 1,000 subjects aged 65 and older from a dozen health centers across the globe. The patients all received an MRI within nine days of elective surgery.
The goal was to assess for signs of silent stroke—that is, strokes with no noticeable outward symptoms. But while the event itself goes unnoticed, it leaves behind a very distinct calling card—in the form of “white matter hyperintensities.”
These white matter hyperintensities appear as white spots on an MRI. Or as I like to call them, “age spots” on your brain. Except, unlike wrinkles, gray hair, or liver spots on your skin, these “age spots” aren’t harmless.
On the contrary, the more silent strokes—and subsequent age spots—your brain suffers, the greater the impact on your cognitive function. In fact, research suggests this symptomless condition is the true cause behind a shocking number of Alzheimer’s and dementia diagnoses.
But if that sounds scary, just wait until you hear this: Researchers found that one out of every 14 seniors who chose to have elective non-cardiac surgery went on to suffer a silent stroke.
That adds up to some three million patients per year… making silent strokes even more common than overt strokes in this population. In turn, those subjects were left with a much higher risk of cognitive decline, delirium, overt stroke, or transient ischemic attack during the year following the operation.
These shocking results appeared recently in The Lancet. And if they don’t have scalpel-happy doctors second-guessing their recommendations, I truly don’t know what will.
Surgery should be a last resort
This isn’t the first study to expose the risks of surgery to your brain. In fact, previous research shows that anesthesia can heighten risk of dementia years down the road. So really, this latest finding only adds insult to injury.
But I don’t bring all of this up to scare anyone out of a much needed surgery. I’m doing it because, in this day and age, unnecessary surgeries are practically de rigueur. And I’m not just talking about the cosmetic variety, either.
For example, conventional doctors routinely recommend gallbladder removal—when really, the scalpel should always be a last resort in the effort to ward off painful attacks.
And more recently, weight loss surgery is recommended as a first line of defense against diabetes. You know, as if they’d never once considered the merits of plain old diet and exercise.
And those are just two of the most common examples.
It’s true that surgery can’t always be avoided. But the fact is, my A-List Diet offers a permanent solution to most chronic health problems. And in the face of research like this, I can’t imagine why anyone wouldn’t want to exhaust every other possible route to recovery first.
So if you still need to go under the knife, knowing how to minimize your risk is critical.
Luckily, I detailed everything you need to know about silent strokes—including how to prevent them—in the February 2018 issue of my Logical Health Alternatives newsletter (“The silent culprit behind brain breakdown—and how to stop the damage before it starts”). You can access this article, and my entire archive, if you subscribe today.
P.S. I’ve developed an all-natural plan to prevent and reverse America’s biggest killers—high blood pressure, heart attack, and stroke. It’s called the Ultimate Heart-Protection Protocol. Whether you have a surgery coming up, a history of heart disease, or both, this unique online learning tool will arm you with dozens of lifestyle, dietary, and supplement recommendations to safeguard you against silent strokes. Click here to learn more, or sign up today!
“‘Silent’ strokes common after surgery, linked to cognitive decline.” Science Daily, 08/15/2019. (sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/08/190815212759.htm).