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Black young adults hospitalized for stroke at much higher rate than whites, Hispanics
Date:3/13/2009

from the three largest ethnic groups in Florida: whites, blacks and Hispanics. Among the findings:

  • The age-adjusted stroke hospitalization rate for blacks was three times higher than for whites or Hispanics. Stroke hospitalization rates for Hispanics were similar to those for whites.

  • The rates at which hospitalized stroke patients died were 15 percent higher for blacks than whites, but this disparity was explained by a greater prevalence of stroke risk factors and complicating illnesses such as diabetes, coronary artery disease and heart failure.

  • In contrast, Hispanic stroke patients were 27 percent less likely to die in the hospital than whites after taking risk factors and other illnesses into account. More studies are needed to determine whether Hispanic ethnicity actually confers any sort of protective advantage, the researchers said.

  • Black stroke patients were more likely than whites and Hispanics to have been diagnosed with high blood pressure, morbid obesity or drug abuse. White stroke patients were more likely to have been diagnosed with high cholesterol, alcohol abuse or cigarette smoking.

  • The majority of black stroke patients (56 percent) where women, while the majority of Hispanic and white patients were men.

  • Hispanics were more likely than blacks and whites to suffer a hemorrhagic stroke, triggered by the rupture of a blood vessel in the brain. As with the elderly, the most common type of stroke in younger adults, known as ischemic stroke, was caused by the obstruction of blood flow to the brain.

While the USF study did not find an increase (or decrease) in young adults hospitalized for stroke in Florida, Dr. Sloan is concerned that tough economic times may lead to rise in strokes and other cardiovascular incidents. "When people stop taking their blood pressure pills and other medications because they can no longer afford it, they have stro
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Contact: Anne DeLotto Baier
abaier@health.usf.edu
813-974-3300
University of South Florida Health
Source:Eurekalert

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