Stroke is not killing as many people in the United States as it has in the past. A report in the Journal of the American Medical Association shows a decline in stroke rates for people older than 65. The study showed stroke-related rates and deaths declined from 1987 to 2011.

Dr. Bret Haake at Regions Hospital in St. Paul pointed to better cholesterol- and blood-pressure screening. More people are opting to take cholesterol medication and blood pressure pills.

Haake said there are still some areas that can be improved.

“There are two risk factors that are going the wrong direction. Obesity and diabetes…. and so getting out and exercising would be two other things that would be really important, he said.

Haake predicts that the United States will continue to see stroke deaths decline.

-VINEETA SAWKAR