Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Unsettling numbers: Stroke rates and young people

This topic really hits home for me. I was under 40 when mine happened. Despite that, there's a general assumption that strokes happen only to the elderly.

But yet another study shows stroke rates appear to be rising steadily in young adults:
"Most people think that having a stroke is something that only happens to older people, but the impact of stroke is significant — it is uniquely complex in younger adults, in midst of careers, serving as wage earners and caregivers, who may suffer disability that can impact their lives and the lives of family members and loved ones," George said.
Previous studies have looked at how stroke rates have increased in young adults, but this was a larger study that looked over a longer period of time, said Diana Greene-Chandos, a neurologist and director of neuroscience critical care at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center who was not part of the study.
"It showed us that not only was there an increase but also an increase that was associated with common risk factors in stroke," she said. "It is  an important call to us as stroke neurologists and critical-care neurologists to start to study this more and more because of the way it was done. There are some limitations to it, but I think that it's enough good data that we should start to spend more of our resources in looking at this."
This isn't the first post about this topic - click here to read more about strokes and young people. And sadly, it likely won't be the last. As the article cited above says, it's time to spend more resources to look at this issue.

What can the non-health professional population do? Know stroke signs and act accordingly. Be aware of stroke risk factors and take stroke prevention measures.

(Image from the National Library of Medicine)

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