Public Release: 

Women, minorities report lower function in the months after stroke

ISC 16 Thursday news tips

American Heart Association

Female and minority stroke survivors reported less ability to function three months after their strokes than males and Caucasian patients, according to research presented at the American Stroke Association's International Stroke Conference 2016.

Researchers mailed the Stroke Impact Score questionnaire to survivors who had suffered ischemic, hemorrhagic and transient ischemic attack (TIA or mini stroke). The 129 patients answered questions about their mobility, arm strength and ability to do tasks associated with daily living three months after their strokes. The researchers calculated average scores when patients rated difficulties in 16 areas, for a total score ranging from zero (worst) to 100 (best).

The researchers found:

The overall average score was fairly high at 81.1. However, men scored an average 85.7, while women had an average 75.8, indicating lower functioning than men.

While white patients reported an average 85.4 points on the scale, non-white patients reported an average 69.4.

It wasn't as clear a finding, but it seemed that patients who had prior strokes or TIAs had lower functioning ability than those whose first stroke or TIA occurred three months earlier.

Future healthcare quality improvement projects on stroke patients should focus on improving post-stroke functioning among women, minorities and patients who have had multiple strokes, according to the authors.

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Join the AHA/ASA Support Network to talk with others going through similar journeys including depression after stroke.
Follow news from the American Stroke Association's International Stroke Conference 2016 via Twitter: @HeartNews #ISC16.

Statements and conclusions of study authors that are presented at American Stroke Association scientific meetings are solely those of the study authors and do not necessarily reflect association policy or position. The association makes no representation or warranty as to their accuracy or reliability. The association receives funding primarily from individuals; foundations and corporations (including pharmaceutical, device manufacturers and other companies) also make donations and fund specific association programs and events. The association has strict policies to prevent these relationships from influencing the science content. Revenues from pharmaceutical and device corporations are available at http://www.heart.org/corporatefunding.

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