According to a study by public health researchers at the University of California San Francisco, the University of Minnesota, University of Washington and Harvard, individuals suffering chronic depression have an elevated risk of stroke. In addition, this increase in risk continues to linger after the depression has been treated. American Heart Association spokesperson Dr. Philip Gorelick states that there is still a 66% risk of stroke after depression symptoms have been addressed. Lead author of the study Paola Gilsanz says, “We already knew that people with depression, or even symptoms of depression, had higher stroke risk, what we didn’t know is whether the symptoms of depression went away, the stroke risk would also go away.” Previously, it was believed that once depression was treated, the risk of stroke would return to baseline. Now that this belief has been challenged, researchers hope practices will consider risk after depression treatment. Dr. Gorelick elaborates “In some more advanced medical practices, what we are now doing is screening for depression, and if you have depression and another cardiovascular risk factor, then these patients are getting very intensive risk management from a team, and the team is now including psychiatrists.” With this study, researchers hope that the medical community continues to focus on the link between cardiovascular disease and depression.