Stroke Cases On The Rise Among Young People
Stroke hospitalizations have gone up among young adults and children over the last 14 years, according to new research.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta look at data from hospitalization records in people ages 15 to 44 for ischemic stroke, which occurs when plaque blocks a blood vessel that supplies the brain. They found that hospitalizations for ischemic stroke increased 31 percent among those aged five to fourteen between 1995 and 2008, and it increased 30 percent among people aged 15-34.
Additionally, almost one in three patients hospitalized for ischemic stroke between the ages of 15 to 34 and over half aged 35 to 44 years were also diagnosed with hypertension. Among patients aged 35 to 44 years, one in four also had diabetes.
The researchers recommend that adolescents, their parents, and young adults can help avoid stroke by focusing on eating a healthy diet, getting physical activity regularly and not smoking. These things will decrease the likelihood of hypertension, cholesterol and diabetes – all major factors contributing to risk of stroke.
CBC quotes Dr. Mary George and her co-authors as concluding, "Urgent public health initiatives are needed to reverse the rising trends in modifiable risk factors and unhealthy behaviours associated with stroke in adolescents and young adults.”
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