Sub-Saharan Africa is experiencing an epidemiologic transition with stroke contributing to the disease burden. However, community-based stroke prevalence studies are sparse. This study aimed to determine the prevalence of stroke in a rural population in the Niger Delta region in south-south Nigeria and to describe known risk factors for stroke among them. A door-to-door stroke prevalence study was conducted in 2008 among randomly selected adults of 18 years or older in rural Kegbara-Dere community in Rivers State, south-south Nigeria. We administered a modified screening tool by the World Health Organization, a stroke-specific questionnaire, and conducted a physical/neurological examination (on persons screening positive) in 3 stages of assessments. The crude prevalence of stroke was 8.51/1000 (95% confidence interval [CI] = 3.9-16.1) representing 9 of 1057 participants. The age-adjusted prevalence was 12.3/1000 using the US Population 2000. Men had higher unadjusted prevalence than women (12.9/1000 versus 5.1/1000) but were not at more risk (unadjusted relative risk = .99; 95% CI = .98-1.00). Stroke prevalence increased with age (Mantel-Haenszel χ(2) P = .00). Hypertension (blood pressure ≥140/90 mm Hg) was present in all stroke cases and diabetes mellitus (fasting blood sugar >126 mg/dL) in 1 person, but none had hypercholesterolemia, obesity (body mass index >30 kg/m(2)), or a history of alcohol intake or smoking. Stroke prevalence was found to be high, commoner among men and the elderly population, and likely to be predisposed by hypertension, in rural south-south Nigeria. The need to conduct follow-up studies on the burden and outcomes of stroke among this study population is acknowledged.
Keywords: Niger Delta; Nigeria; Stroke; prevalence; rural population.
Copyright © 2014 National Stroke Association. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.