Stroke awareness in the general population: knowledge of stroke risk factors and warning signs in older adults.
AffiliationDepartment of Psychology, Division of Population Health Sciences, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, Dublin, Ireland. email@example.com
MetadataShow full item record
CitationStroke awareness in the general population: knowledge of stroke risk factors and warning signs in older adults. 2009, 9:35 BMC Geriatr
AbstractBACKGROUND: Stroke is a leading cause of death and functional impairment. While older people are particularly vulnerable to stroke, research suggests that they have the poorest awareness of stroke warning signs and risk factors. This study examined knowledge of stroke warning signs and risk factors among community-dwelling older adults. METHODS: Randomly selected community-dwelling older people (aged 65+) in Ireland (n = 2,033; 68% response rate). Participants completed home interviews. Questions assessed knowledge of stroke warning signs and risk factors, and personal risk factors for stroke. RESULTS: Of the overall sample, 6% had previously experienced a stroke or transient ischaemic attack. When asked to identify stroke risk factors from a provided list, less than half of the overall sample identified established risk factors (e.g., smoking, hypercholesterolaemia), hypertension being the only exception (identified by 74%). Similarly, less than half identified established warning signs (e.g., weakness, headache), with slurred speech (54%) as the exception. Overall, there were considerable gaps in awareness with poorest levels evident in those with primary level education only and in those living in Northern Ireland (compared with Republic of Ireland). CONCLUSION: Knowledge deficits in this study suggest that most of the common early symptoms or signs of stroke were recognized as such by less than half of the older adults surveyed. As such, many older adults may not recognise early symptoms of stroke in themselves or others. Thus, they may lose vital time in presenting for medical attention. Lack of public awareness about stroke warning signs and risk factors must be addressed as one important contribution to reducing mortality and morbidity from stroke.
CollectionsJournal articles & published research
- Knowledge of stroke risk factors and warning signs in Ireland: development and application of the Stroke Awareness Questionnaire (SAQ).
- Authors: Hickey A, Holly D, McGee H, Conroy R, Shelley E
- Issue date: 2012 Jun
- Knowledge of stroke warning signs and risk factors among patients with previous stroke or TIA in China.
- Authors: Zeng Y, He GP, Yi GH, Huang YJ, Zhang QH, He LL
- Issue date: 2012 Oct
- A population- based study on awareness of heart attack in Aydin city-Turkey.
- Authors: Memiş S, Evci ED, Ergin F, Beşer E
- Issue date: 2009 Aug
- Knowledge of stroke risk factors and early warning signs of stroke among students enrolled in allied health programs: a pilot study.
- Authors: Milner A, Lewis WJ, Ellis C
- Issue date: 2008 Winter
- Knowledge of stroke risk factors and warning signs among Michigan adults.
- Authors: Reeves MJ, Hogan JG, Rafferty AP
- Issue date: 2002 Nov 26