Risk factor profiles of South Asians with cerebrovascular disease

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Background: There is a paucity of population based data about the coexistent proportions of risk factors for stroke in South Asians. Methods:In this cross sectional survey performed in an urban slum, individuals 35 years of age or older were invited for participation through a simple random sample drawn from baseline census data. For each participant a systematic history and examination was performed to confirm the following risk factors: diabetes, hypertension, obesity, tobacco use, coronary artery disease, family history of coronary artery disease and/or stroke. Cerebrovascular events (stroke and TIA) were verified by a vascular neurologist. We report the association of risk factor groups and the presence of contemporaneous cerebrovascular event.


Five hundred and forty-five individuals (49.4% females) participated in the study. One hundred and nineteen (21.8%) individuals had a cerebrovascular event (stroke and / or TIA). Obesity was found to be the predominant risk factor, occurring in 310 individuals (56.9%), followed by total hypertension (284, 52.1%) and tobacco use respectively (213, 39 %). Cerebrovascular event increased in percentage with quantitative increase in risk factors. Cerebrovascular event prevalence was 14.3% with one risk factor, 22% with two, 27% with three, 33% with four, and 86% with five risk factors respectively. The combination of 4 risk factors (hypertension, diabetes, obesity and cigarette smoking) conferred the highest odds of having cerebrovascular event at 4.9 (P 0.03).


South Asians in an urban slum often have multiple modifiable risk factors for cerebrovascular event, increasing numbers of risk factors increase the risk of stroke and TIA.


International Journal of Stroke