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National Stroke Association survey reveals more than half of stroke survivors suffer added burden of little known neurologic condition
Date:10/18/2010

CENTENNIAL, CO October 18, 2010 A survey released today by National Stroke Association shows that 53 percent of stroke survivor respondents suffer from symptoms of another neurologic condition called pseudobulbar affect (PBA), a condition thought to be caused by structural damage in the brain due to injury or disease. PBA causes involuntary and unpredictable outbursts of laughing or crying, often in socially inappropriate situations. Even though a significant proportion of stroke survivors suffer from PBA, fewer than one in five are familiar with the condition.

Survey results demonstrated that of the total National Stroke Association respondents, over half (304 of 578 respondents) had symptoms of PBA as determined by a score of 13 or greater on the Center for Neurologic Study Lability Scale (CNS-LS), the standard, self-report tool used to assess the presence and severity of PBA symptoms. Of these respondents, approximately 27 percent had CNS-LS scores that indicated moderate-to-severe symptoms of PBA. More than one-quarter (27%) indicated that they experience PBA outbursts frequently or often.

In addition to the potential prevalence of PBA among stroke survivors, the results illustrated the negative effect on quality of life that PBA has on stroke survivors and their caregivers. About four in 10 respondents reported that PBA episodes interfere with their social activities including spending time with friends and family. Likewise, about one-third of the respondents indicate that PBA episodes have contributed to difficulty in maintaining relationships or becoming housebound.

"With more than six million stroke survivors in the United States, the prevalence and burden of pseudobulbar affect in the stroke community is significant," said James Baranski, CEO, National Stroke Association. "Not only are these survivors recovering from a serious neurologic injury, but they are also dealing with the anxiety, embarrassment and social isolatio
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Contact: Lauren Fulk
lfulk@spectrumscience.com
202-955-6222
Spectrum
Source:Eurekalert

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