Annals of Indian Academy of Neurology
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J S CHOPRA ORATION
Year : 2006  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 193-198

Stroke care: Experiences and clinical research in stroke units in Chennai


President, Indian Stroke Association, Founder Member and Fellow, Indian Academy of Neurology, Prof. Emeritus. Dr. MGR Medical University, Chennai, Visiting Professor, Madras Institute of Neurology, Consultant Neurologist, Stroke Units, Vijaya/Mercury, Chennai, India

Correspondence Address:
Arjundas Gobindram
Stroke Unit, Mercury Hospital, 36, Pantheon Road, Chennai - 600 008
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0972-2327.29200

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Background: S troke is the second commonest cause of death in India with crude overall prevalence rate of 220 per 100,000. With an increasing aging population at risk, the stroke burden in India can be expected to reach epidemic proportions. Materials and Methods: The first protocol-based prospective studies, funded by private agencies was conducted in Madras Institute of Neurology in 1984-86. The results led to establishment of the first stroke unit in Tamil Nadu state, in the institute. The first all-India hospital-based studies in acute stroke was completed as INDIAN COOPERATIVE ACUTE STROKE STUDIES (ICASS I and ICASS II with WHO STEP ONE) by members of the Indian Stroke Association between 2000-2005. This has generated very useful data for our country. Results: Mortality in 1984-86 was 40%. Stroke unit in the institute dropped it to 12%. About 10 years later, ICASS studies showed a further fall of mortality to 8%, which is the current international figure in the west. Morbidity pattern showed about half return to their original activities. But about one third are left totally disabled needing prolonged care, for which fiscal, social and rehab provisions have to be done on a national basis. Conclusions: The progress and success of care of Stroke in the last three decades, from treatment in medical and neurology wards to specialized stroke units is presented. The main risk factors are hypertension, diabetes and ischemic heart disease across the country. Hypertension alone or with the other two diseases was present in 72% of cases. Prevention and treatment of these factors will reduce the stroke burden, mortality and morbidity of strokes. The Stroke-team concept can be extended to the smallest hospitals in our country.


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