Stroke Hospitalization Rates and Risk Factors Increasing in Young Adults

Monday, April 17, 2017

Rates of acute ischemic stroke are increasing in young adults, new findings suggest (JAMA Neurology, April 10). Investigators analyzed stroke hospitalization rates as well as associated risk factors among patients between the ages of 18 and 64 years of age. They found that acute ischemic stroke hospitalization rates increased significantly for both men and women. Moreover, since 1995-1996, rates have almost doubled for men between 18 and 44 year of age, while rates for men and women aged 55 to 64 have not changed from 2003-2004. They also found that prevalence of stroke risk factors—such as hypertension, lipid disorders, diabetes, tobacco use, and obesity—among those hospitalized for acute ischemic stroke continued to increase from 2003-2004 through 2011-2012 for both men and women aged 18 to 64 years. The investigators concluded that these findings highlight the importance of emphasizing stroke prevention and overall health in younger adults. “Preventing and controlling stroke risk factors among young working-age adults can save lives, reduce disability, decrease societal health care costs, and improve the quality of life for hundreds of thousands of Americans and their families,” the authors concluded.

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