Background and purpose: Mild strokes can be neglected regarding subtle sequels as fatigue, and cognitive and emotional changes. We have addressed this topic by exploring late consequences of an initially mild stroke (Barthel score >or=50). Accordingly, we assayed impairment, disability and handicap data 1 year after the first-ever stroke in persons <75 years, focusing on symptoms as fatigue, concentration difficulties, memory disturbances, emotional lability, stress resistance, anxiety and uneasiness, symptoms comprised in the astheno-emotional disorder (AED), and its relation to life satisfaction.
Results: The mean value of the Barthel Index was 99.5 (SD 0.5) and 25% scored 0-1 on the Oxford Handicap Scale. AED was diagnosed in 71% of the patients, and fatigue was experienced by 72%. AED correlated significantly with life satisfaction, handicap and depression. Life satisfaction was significantly below that of norm values according to satisfaction with life as a whole, sex life and ability to manage selfcare.
Conclusions: Our findings emphasize that 'hidden dysfunctions' not so easily discovered within the hospital context are common consequences of mild stroke. The concept of mild stroke as principally founded in motor function or ability in P-ADL therefore seems to be insufficient with respect to the patient long-term perspective.
Copyright 2003 S. Karger AG, Basel