BMC Neurol. 2022 Sep 6;22(1):335. doi: 10.1186/s12883-022-02853-5.
BACKGROUND: Stroke is the second leading cause of death above the age of 60 years, and the fifth leading cause in people aged 15 to 59 years old as reported by the World Health Organization global burden of diseases. Stroke in the young is particularly tragic because of the potential to create long-term disability, burden on the victims, their families, and the community at large. Despite this, there is limited data on stroke in young adults, and its risk factors in Uganda. Therefore, we determined the frequency and risk factors for stroke among young adults at Mulago hospital.
METHODS: A case control study was conducted among patients presenting consecutively to the general medical wards with stroke during the study period September 2015 to March 2016. A brain Computerized Tomography scan was performed to confirm stroke and classify the stroke subtype. Controls were patients that presented to the surgical outpatient clinic with minor surgical conditions, matched for age and sex. Social demographic, clinical and laboratory characteristics were assessed for both cases and controls. Descriptive statistics including frequencies, percentages, means, and standard deviation were used to describe the social demographics of case and controls as well as the stroke types for cases. To determine risk factors for stroke, a conditional logistic regression, which accounts for matching (e.g., age and sex), was applied. Odds ratio (with 95% confidence interval) was used as a measure for associations.
RESULTS: Among 51 patients with stroke, 39(76.5%) had ischemic stroke and 12(23.5%) had hemorrhagic stroke. The mean age was 36.8 years (SD 7.4) for stroke patients (cases) and 36.8 years (SD 6.9) for controls. Female patients predominated in both groups 56.9% in cases and 52.9% in controls. Risk factors noted were HIV infection, OR 3.57 (95% CI 1.16-10.96), elevated waist to hip ratio, OR 11.59(95% CI 1.98-68.24) and sickle cell disease, OR 4.68 (95% CI 1.11-19.70). This study found a protective effect of oral contraceptive use for stroke OR 0.27 95% CI 0.08-0.87. There was no association between stroke and hypertension, diabetes, and hyperlipidemia.
CONCLUSION: Among young adults with stroke, ischemic stroke predominated over hemorrhagic stroke. Risk factors for stroke were HIV infection, elevated waist to hip ratio and sickle cell disease.