Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Stroke trigger more deadly for African-Americans

Date:
February 8, 2014
Source:
University of Michigan Health System
Summary:
In a new study, results show that African-Americans were 39 times more likely to die of a stroke if they were exposed to an infection.

Infection is a stronger trigger of stroke death in African- Americans than in whites, a University of Michigan study shows.

African-Americans were 39 times more likely to die of a stroke if they were exposed to an infection in the previous month when compared to other time periods while whites were four times more likely and Hispanics were five times more likely to die of stroke after an infection, according to the findings that appear online Feb. 7 in Neurology.

The most frequent infections were urinary, skin, and respiratory tract infections and occurred within 30 days of a stroke.

"Infection before stroke appears to be most lethal for black Americans," says lead author Deborah A. Levine, M.D., M.P.H., assistant professor of medicine in the division of general medicine in the U-M Medical School. "We know that African- Americans have a much greater risk of dying from a stroke than white Americans, and we wanted to know if infection -- which research suggests is a stroke trigger -- might contribute to this disparity."

Infection is believed to promote the formation of blood clots and fat buildup in arteries, which block the artery and stop the flow of blood to the brain causing a stroke.

Racial disparities in stroke death continue to widen in the U.S. where blacks are twice as likely to die from stroke as whites. The new findings show that all ethnic and racial groups had a higher risk of stroke following an infection but there were significant disparities in subsequent stroke deaths.

Infection appeared to be a trigger of stroke death in whites and Hispanics as well, but it was particularly potent in African-Americans.

Infection also occurred more often before stroke death in black Americans, with 70 percent experiencing an infection in the 30 days before stroke death compared to a frequency of 15 percent in months that were not followed by a stroke death. Infection occurred less often before stroke death in white Americans, with 45 percent experiencing an infection in the month before stroke death compared to a frequency of 19 percent in months that were not followed by a stroke death.

Although earlier studies suggested that respiratory infections are the most potent triggers of stroke, Levine and colleagues found that urinary tract infections and skin infections seemed to be just as strong of triggers.

The study was based on data from the Health and Retirement Study, a nationally-representative sample of older Americans that is conducted by the U-M Institute for Social Research on behalf of the National Institute of Aging.

"Because of the higher stroke mortality rate among black Americans, there has been much attention on racial differences in vascular risk factors, like hypertension, and health behaviors but less attention on acute exposures that might contribute to racial differences in stroke deaths," Levine says.

"It is unclear why acute infection is more common, more lethal, or a more powerful trigger for stroke death in black Americans. Genetic risks, clinical, economic or environmental factors, and differences in access to health care are potential reasons. We need further studies to better understand this disparity so we can prevent more black Americans from dying of stroke, particularly after infection," Levine says.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Michigan Health System. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. D. A. Levine, K. M. Langa, M. A. M. Rogers. Acute infection contributes to racial disparities in stroke mortality. Neurology, 2014; DOI: 10.1212/WNL.0000000000000214

Cite This Page:

University of Michigan Health System. "Stroke trigger more deadly for African-Americans." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 8 February 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/02/140208080540.htm>.
University of Michigan Health System. (2014, February 8). Stroke trigger more deadly for African-Americans. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/02/140208080540.htm
University of Michigan Health System. "Stroke trigger more deadly for African-Americans." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/02/140208080540.htm (accessed April 24, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Big Pharma Braces for M&A Wave

Big Pharma Braces for M&A Wave

Reuters - Business Video Online (Apr. 22, 2014) Big pharma on the move as Novartis boss, Joe Jimenez, tells Reuters about plans to transform his company via an asset exchange with GSK, and Astra Zeneca shares surge on speculation that Pfizer is looking for a takeover. Joanna Partridge reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Study Says Most Crime Not Linked To Mental Illness

Study Says Most Crime Not Linked To Mental Illness

Newsy (Apr. 22, 2014) A new study finds most crimes committed by people with mental illness are not caused by symptoms of their illness or disorder. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Hagel Gets Preview of New High-Tech Projects

Hagel Gets Preview of New High-Tech Projects

AP (Apr. 22, 2014) Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel is given hands-on demonstrations Tuesday of some of the newest research from DARPA _ the military's Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency program. (April 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Smaller Plates And Cutlery Could Make You Feel Fuller

How Smaller Plates And Cutlery Could Make You Feel Fuller

Newsy (Apr. 22, 2014) NBC's "Today" conducted an experiment to see if changing the size of plates and utensils affects the amount individuals eat. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins