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Member Research & Reports

Member Research & Reports

UAB Investigators and Team Examine Risk Factors in First versus Recurrent Stroke

Dr. George Howard, professor in the department of biostatistics at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, recently conducted a study to determine if black race and other cerebrovascular risk factors have a differential effect on incidences of first versus recurrent stroke. UAB co-investigators are department colleagues Dr. Suzanne E. Judd, associate professor, and Mr. J. David Rhodes, program director; as well as Dr. Kara Sands, assistant professor in the department of neurology; and Dr. Virginia Howard, professor in the department of epidemiology.

[Photo: Dr. George Howard]

Using data from a longitudinal cohort study regarding 29,682 Black and White participants, aged 45 years or older, the team approximated the variances between demographic aspects (such as age, race, and sex) and risk factors for stroke (such as high blood pressure, cigarette smoking, diabetes, atrial fibrillation, left ventricular hypertrophy, and heart disease).

“Over an average 6.8 years follow-up, 301 of 2,993 participants with a previous stroke at baseline had a recurrent stroke, while 818 of 26,689 participants who were stroke-free at baseline had a first stroke. Among those stroke-free at baseline, there was an age-by-race interaction, with a first stroke risk 2.70 (95 percent confidence interval [CI]: 1.86-3.91) times greater for black than white participants at age 45, but no racial disparity at age 85 (hazard ratio = 0.91; 95 percent CI: 0.70-1.18). In contrast, there was no evidence of a higher risk of recurrent stroke at any age for black participants. The association of traditional stroke risk factors was generally similar for first and recurrent stroke. The association of age and black race differs substantially on first versus recurrent stroke risk, with risk factors playing a similar role,” reports Dr. Howard.

“Differences in the Role of Black Race and Stroke Risk Factors for First vs Recurrent Stroke” was published online in January 2016 in the journal Neurology.

Journal article: