In a recent study published in Stroke, researchers emphasize how critical it is for survivors of first-time stroke to take medications on an ongoing basis, with new findings highlighting long-term links with survival.
The study is from Monash University. One author is Associate Professor Monique Kilkenny.
In Australia, someone suffers a stroke every 19 minutes and it is one of Australia’s biggest killers. In addition, nearly half of all survivors of stroke are expected to experience a recurrent cardiovascular event within 10 years.
Specific medications help to prevent this long-term risk, but adherence to these agents is often suboptimal among patients.
In the study, the team used linked data from 8,363 adult patients who survived a first stroke between July 2010 and June 2014, with follow-up for a further three years.
They found for patients with one-year adherence above 60%, each 10% improvement in adherence was linked to a 13–15% reduction in the death risk.
The team says there are several factors associated with a greater chance of continued use of secondary prevention medications: provision of medication on hospital discharge, regular contact with a primary care physician, and specialist physician contact.
These findings represent important implications for practice by highlighting the value of efforts to improve medication adherence post-stroke, even among patients with near-perfect adherence.
If you care about stroke, please read studies about why stroke survivors need to pay attention to bone health and findings of 15 minutes earlier in stroke treatment can save lives.
For more information about stroke and your health, please see recent studies about antibiotic use linked to higher risk of heart attack, stroke and results showing that this body infection has strongest link with stroke.
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