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Clinico-epidemiological profile of stroke patients in the Himalayan Subcontinent – A retrospective study

Rajesh Kumar, Neetu Kataria, Divya M Radhakrishnan, Niraj Kumar.


Background: The use of the raw and naturally available substance is increasing in the Himalayan region of the Indian subcontinent. Strikingly, not a single study points out the magnitude of substance abuse among stroke patients.

Aims and Objectives: This record analysis aims to study the sociodemographic, clinical profile, and magnitude of substance abuse among stroke patients.

Materials and Methods: A retrospective record analysis was conducted using 48 medical records of stroke patients admitted during the period of June 1, 2018,–May 1, 2019, in a newly established tertiary care public hospital, North India. Records were studied for the clinical profile, epidemiological details, and other relevant investigations at the time of admission. Appropriate statistics was applied to generate the results.

Results: Majority (70.8%) of patients were old (>50 years) with a mean age of 55.25 (±1.322) years. Of the 48 medical records, ischemic stroke (79.16%) patients reported substance abuse (80.6%) and rehospitalization (31.25%) within a year of stroke. Patients with alcohol use as compared to non-users had significantly lower good cholesterol (high-density lipoprotein) (P < 0.003), lower diastolic hypertension (P < 0.032), higher pulse rate (P < 0.037), and higher creatine kinase-myocardial band (CK-MB) (P < 0.005) status. Further, substance abuse found a significant association with the type of stroke (P < 0.01), dyslipidemia (P < 0.018), and stroke recurrence events (P < 0.031).

Conclusion: Smoking and alcohol are an alarming stage among stroke patients in the Himalayan region. Stroke patients should be routinely screened and counseled regarding abstinence from substance abuse, if present, as it may be associated with poor control of vascular risk factors and contribute to recurrence.

Key words: Stroke; Substance Abuse; Risk Factors; Recurrence

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