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Post-stroke language and orientation impairments could predict recurrent stroke

New study provides insights into stroke recurrence and death in patients with insulin resistance

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Language and orientation impairments after stroke may predict recurrent stroke, US researchers have found.

The new study published in the Journal of Stroke and Cerebrovascular Diseases performed a secondary analysis on stroke patients with insulin resistance – a known risk factor for stroke– to see if cognitive impairment increased the risk of a stroke recurrence or death.

The patients were part of the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke’s NIH Insulin Resistance Intervention After Stroke Trial.

The study, conducted by Zurab Nadareishvili, corresponding author and associate professor in the George Washington University Department of Neurology and Rehabilitation and his colleagues, found that impaired language was associated with a 35 per cent increased risk of stroke recurrence, and orientation impairment was associated with a 41 per cent increase in stroke recurrence.

The researchers also found that impaired attention was associated with a 34 per cent increase in risk of all-cause mortality.

All these associations were independent of demographics, vascular risk factors, stroke cause and severity, as well as treatment including study drug assignment.

“This research highlights the importance of cognitive testing of patients around three months after stroke to better  identify those at higher risk of stroke recurrence and death,” said Dr Nadareishvili.

“Further research is needed to better understand how these cognitive impairments increase the risk of stroke, and more work should be done to better identify how to best treat patients at a higher risk.”

In patients with post-stroke cognitive impairment, the risk factors that contribute to stroke recurrence or death in certain populations is still unknown.

A better understanding of who is at risk for a stroke recurrence or death would allow clinicians to better identify, monitor and treat stroke patients at a higher risk, which could potentially prevent stroke recurrence and save lives.

 

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