Background: Stroke has a major impact on survivors. Our study was designed to describe the mental status and health-related quality of life (HRQoL) in long-term survivors of TIA or minor ischaemic stroke (MIS) and evaluate associations of mental and physical factors with HR-QoL.
Methods: A random sample of the 10-year survivors of the Dutch TIA Trial (DTT) and the dutch participants of the European Atrial Fibrillation Trial (EAFT) were interviewed by postal questionnaire (n = 468) and at home (n = 198). Demographic data, mental health status (depression (CES-D), cognition (CAMCOG)), and health perception (SF-36 and Euroqol) were measured.
Results: 198 long-term survivors were included; mean age was 72.5 (SD 8.7 years), 22% was depressed (CES-D > or = 16) and 15% had cognitive dysfunction (CAMCOG < 80). The overall HR-QoL did not differ much from the norm population. Physical disability, occurrence of a major stroke and comorbidity of locomotion or the heart were independently associated with a low health perception.
Conclusions: Despite varying amounts of disability, the majority of long-term survivors of a TIA or MIS rated their quality of life as rather good. Physical factors, rather than mental status were independently related to a decrease in perceived health.