Stroke epidemiology, prevention, and management strategies at a regional level: Latin America and the Caribbean

Lancet Neurol. 2007 Apr;6(4):362-72. doi: 10.1016/S1474-4422(07)70003-0.


Stroke is a major health problem in Latin American and Caribbean countries. In this paper, we review the epidemiology, aetiology, and management of stroke in the region based on a systematic search of articles published in Spanish, Portuguese, and English. Stroke mortality is higher than in developed countries but rates are declining. Population-based studies show variations in incidence of strokes: lower rates of ischaemic stroke and similar rates of intracranial haemorrhages, compared with other regions. A significant proportion of strokes in these populations can be attributed to a few preventable risk factors. Some countries have published national clinical guidelines, although much needs to be done in the organisation of care and rehabilitation. Even though the burden of stroke is high, there is a paucity of information for implementing evidence-based management. The Global Stroke Initiative, the WHO STEPS Stroke surveillance, and WHO-PREMISE projects provide opportunities for surveillance at institutional and community levels.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Brain Ischemia / mortality*
  • Brain Ischemia / prevention & control*
  • Brain Ischemia / therapy
  • Caribbean Region / epidemiology
  • Community Health Planning / standards
  • Global Health*
  • Health Policy / trends
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Latin America / epidemiology
  • Mortality
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic / standards
  • Risk Factors
  • Stroke / mortality*
  • Stroke / prevention & control*
  • Stroke / therapy