The data published in the Global Burden of Disease Study shows an increase in the global risk of stroke in 2016. 24.9 percent of men and 25.1 percent of women are at risk of stroke. In the 1990s, the risk of stroke was 22.9 percent. In order to lower the stroke risk, better information about the risk factors and the expansion of medical care stations is necessary, according to co-author Michael Brainin of Danube University Krems.

Data from 195 countries were published in the Global Burden of Disease Study in the New England Journal of Medicine. Regions with the highest risk of stroke are East Asia (38.8 percent), Central Europe (31.7 percent) and Eastern Europe (31.6 percent). The sub-Saharan region has the lowest stroke risk with 11.8 percent, but the stroke risk was calculated in comparison to other mortality risks. People in sub-Saharan Africa have a greater risk of dying from causes other than stroke. Gender-specific differences are also region-specific. The highest risk of stroke for men is in China (41.1 percent) and East Asia (40.6 percent), while the highest risk of stroke for women is in Eastern Europe (36.5 percent) and East Asia (36.3 percent).

The most common cause of stroke is chronic hypertension, followed by air pollution, high body mass index, and high fasting blood sugar.

Reducing the risk
Five percent of people who suffer a stroke have impairments or disabilities. Ten percent of stroke patients die from it. "This study shows that many regions are still unable to provide adequate medical care. Nowadays, an increasing number of younger people are also affected by stroke. Since stroke care varies greatly from country to country, we need to improve medical care and access to care," says Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. mult. Michael Brainin, Head of the Department of Clinical Neurosciences and Preventive Medicine at Danube University Krems. 




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