Background: Morbidity and mortality of stroke have been investigated extensively in Western populations, while data concerning case fatality and cause of death after stroke are very limited in mainland China. This study aimed to analyze the 1-year survival and predictors of case fatality in Chinese patients with first-ever stroke.
Methods: Subjects are patients registered in the Nanjing Stroke Registry Program. Information concerning cardiovascular risk factors and stroke characteristics were collected, and patients were followed after registration. Ischemic strokes were classified according to TOAST criteria as large-artery atherosclerosis (LAA), cardiac embolism stroke (CES), small-vessel stroke (SVS), or other determined and undetermined causes (UND). One-year case fatality was analyzed by the Kaplan-Meier method, and predictors of case fatality were evaluated by the Cox proportional hazards model.
Results: A total of 752 patients with first-ever stroke were included, of which 142 (18.9%) were identified as intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH), 120 (16.0%) as LAA, 123 (16.4%) as SVS, 160 (21.3%) as CES and 216 (28.7%) as UND. The overall survival rate was 86.4% at the end of the 1-year follow-up. Patients with SVS have the highest survival rate (92.7%), followed by UND (89.4%), CES (88.1%) and LAA (84.2%). Patients with ICH have the lowest survival rate (76.8%). Survival rates of patients with different subtypes of stroke presented a significant difference (chi2 = 19.3, p < 0.001). For patients deceased during the first year after the index stroke, 33.3% of deaths were caused by the first stroke, 18.6% by recurrent stroke, 16.7% by cardiovascular comorbidities, 14.7% by nonvascular conditions and 16.7% died of undetermined causes. Advanced age, hypertension, hyperlipidemia, diabetes mellitus (DM), atrial fibrillation (AF), history of transient ischemic attack and cigarette smoking were associated with an increased risk of death 1 year after stroke.
Conclusions: The case fatality rate and predictors for mortality of Chinese patients with first-ever stroke are similar to those reported for other populations. The significant influence of cardiovascular disease on the first-year survival rate emphasizes the importance of acute stroke management and control of hypertension, DM, AF and other predictors for decreasing case fatality and improving prognosis.
Copyright 2006 S. Karger AG, Basel.