Case fatality rate is considered a main determinant of stroke mortality trends. We applied the World Health Organization's Stroke STEPS to identify case fatality rates in a community hospital in Brazil. We evaluated all patients with first-ever stroke seeking acute care at the hospital's emergency ward between April 2006 and December 2008 to verify early and late case fatality according to stroke subtype. We used years of formal education as a surrogate for socioeconomic status. Of 430 first-ever stroke events, 365 (84.9%) were ischemic and 65 (15.1%) were intracerebral hemorrhage. After 1 year, we adjudicated 108 deaths (86 ischemic; 22 hemorrhagic). Age-adjusted case fatality rates for ischemic stroke and intracerebral hemorrhage were 6.0% v 19.8% at 10 days, 10.6% v 22.1% at 28 days, 17.6% v 29.1% at 6 months, and 21.0% v 31.5% at 1 year. Illiteracy or no formal education was a predictor of death at 6 months (odds ratio [OR], 4.31; 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.34-13.91) and 1 year (OR, 4.21; 95% CI, 1.45-12.28) in patients with ischemic stroke, as well as at 6 months (OR, 3.19; 95% CI, 1.17-8.70) and 1 year (OR, 3.30; 95% CI, 1.30-8.45) for all stroke patients. Other variables, including previous cardiovascular risk factors and acute medical care, did not change this association to a statistically significant degree. In conclusion, case fatality, particularly up to 6 months, was higher in hemorrhagic stroke, and lack of formal education was associated with increased stroke mortality.
Copyright © 2012 National Stroke Association. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.