Public Release: 

Children more vulnerable to psychological problems after a stroke

Session P33 - Poster TP405

American Heart Association

Children who have suffered ischemic (clot-caused) strokes are more likely to have psychological problems, including anxiety and behavioral difficulties, than children who have not had a stroke, according to research presented at the American Stroke Association's International Stroke Conference 2017.

Researchers studied 50 children who had suffered an ischemic stroke at a range of ages - from one month to about 17 years. Parents completed a behavioral checklist at least 10 months after their child's stroke.

Researchers found:

Children with stroke had notably greater mood, anxiety, somatic (physical), oppositional defiance and conduct problems than children without stroke.

Children who had strokes at ages younger than six years had notably higher anxiety levels than older children who had stroke. That could be due to changes in family dynamics when young children suffer a neurological injury, researchers said.

"These results support the need for careful psychological follow-up in this vulnerable population," researchers said.

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Emily Maxwell, Ph.D., University of Colorado School of Medicine, Aurora, Colorado.

Note: Actual presentation is 6:15 p.m. CT/7:15 p.m. ET, Thursday, Feb. 23, 2017 in Hall E.

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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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