Risk Factors for Ischemic Stroke
Dubbo Study of the Elderly
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Background and Purpose—One in 10 deaths in Australia is due to stroke. The predictors of ischemic stroke have not been well defined, although hypertension, atrial fibrillation, and previous stroke have been consistently reported. We report on 98 months’ follow-up in a prospective study of cardiovascular disease in the Australian elderly, the Dubbo Study.
Methods—The cohort, first examined in 1988, was composed of 2805 men and women 60 years and older. The prediction of ischemic stroke by potential risk factors was examined in a Cox proportional hazards model, after linkage to hospital and death records.
Results—Three hundred six men and women manifested an ischemic stroke event (ICD-9-CM 433 to 437), and 95 subjects suffered a fatal stroke event. In the multivariate model, the significant independent predictors of stroke were advancing age, female sex (48% lower risk), being married (30% lower risk), prior history of stroke (227% higher risk), use of antihypertensive drugs (37% higher risk), belonging to the highest category of blood pressure reading (67% higher risk), presence of atrial fibrillation (58% higher risk), HDL cholesterol (36% lower risk for each 1-mmol/L increment), impaired peak expiratory flow (77% higher risk for tertile I than for tertile III), physical disability (59% higher risk), and depression score (41% higher risk for tertile III than for tertile I).
Conclusions—These findings suggest that morbidity and mortality associated with ischemic stroke can be predicted by various clinical indicators, some of which may be amenable to intervention. The matters of impaired peak expiratory flow, depression score, and ischemic stroke require further study.
- Received January 27, 1998.
- Revision received April 21, 1998.
- Accepted April 21, 1998.
- Copyright © 1998 by American Heart Association