Neuropsychiatric symptoms among young stroke survivors-frequency, patterns, and associated factors

Neurol Sci. 2021 Mar 17. doi: 10.1007/s10072-021-05178-2. Online ahead of print.


Background: Although neuropsychiatric symptoms are reported in stroke survivors, details of its prevalence and patterns among young stroke subjects are sparse.

Methods: In a hospital-based cross-sectional study in India, we recruited 150 young stroke subjects (aged < 45 years) and their caregivers > 3 months from ictus. Neuropsychiatric symptoms were evaluated using the Neuropsychiatric Inventory-12 (NPI-12) and self-reported depression with the Centre for Epidemiological Studies - Depression (CES-D) scale. Descriptive statistics were used. Multivariate analysis was performed to identify associated factors. All statistical analyses were carried out using STATA ver. 14.2, StataCorp, TX, USA.

Results: Eighty-four (56%; 95% CI: 47.7-64.1%) had ≥ 1 symptoms on the NPI-12 over median time from stroke of 2 years (IQR 2). Self-reported depression was seen in 71 (47.3%). Post-stroke epilepsy was associated with presence of at least one neuropsychiatric symptom. Dementia was associated with increased odds; and having spouse as principal caregiver with reduced odds, of self-reported depression. Multiple infarcts on imaging were associated with self-reported depression (OR: 3.29; 95%CI: 1.31-8.27) and presence of any neuropsychiatric symptom (OR: 3.55; 95% CI: 1.42-8.88).

Conclusion: Young stroke survivors frequently have neuropsychiatric symptoms with depression being most common. Presence of multiple infarcts on imaging was associated with self-reported depression and presence of any neuropsychiatric symptom.

Keywords: Depression; Neuropsychiatric symptoms; Post-stroke epilepsy; Young stroke.