The risk of stroke within a week of minor stroke or transient ischemic attack

Expert Opin Pharmacother. 2008 Aug;9(12):2069-76. doi: 10.1517/14656566.9.12.2069.


Background: The risk of stroke is highest in the first week following an index stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA). Recent evidence indicates that prompt pharmacological treatment and evaluation may help mitigate this risk.

Objective: To identify risk factors for recurrent stroke 1 week after index cerebrovascular event and review evidence for early and aggressive evaluation and management.

Methods: We searched the National Library of Medicine Pubmed database to identify studies reporting recurrent or secondary stroke in individuals with identified stroke or TIA.

Results/conclusion: The risk of recurrent stroke in the week after a TIA or minor stroke is up to 10%. Factors identified with risk of early stroke recurrence include age, elevated blood pressure, clinical symptoms of motor weakness or speech disturbance, and large vessel atherothrombotic mechanism. Studies have shown that timely initiation of stroke preventative therapy may reduce the risk of stroke within this early period.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antihypertensive Agents / therapeutic use
  • Cerebral Angiography
  • Diagnostic Imaging
  • Early Diagnosis
  • Emergency Treatment*
  • Endarterectomy, Carotid
  • Humans
  • Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Inhibitors / therapeutic use
  • Ischemic Attack, Transient* / diagnosis
  • Ischemic Attack, Transient* / etiology
  • Ischemic Attack, Transient* / therapy
  • Platelet Aggregation Inhibitors / therapeutic use
  • Recurrence
  • Risk Factors
  • Stroke* / diagnosis
  • Stroke* / etiology
  • Stroke* / therapy
  • Time Factors


  • Antihypertensive Agents
  • Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Inhibitors
  • Platelet Aggregation Inhibitors