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Open Access Study protocol

Study protocol of the YOU CALL - WE CALL TRIAL: impact of a multimodal support intervention after a "mild" stroke

Annie Rochette12*, Nicol Korner-Bitensky23, Duane Bishop4, Robert Teasell5, Carole White6, Gina Bravo78, Robert Côté3, Jean Lachaine1, Teri Green9, Louise-Hélène Lebrun1, Sylvain Lanthier1, Moira Kapral10 and Sharon Wood-Dauphinee3

Author Affiliations

1 Montreal University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada

2 Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Rehabilitation of Greater Montreal, Quebec, Canada

3 McGill University, Montreal, Quebec Canada

4 St-Lukes Hospital, Rhode Island, USA

5 University of Western Ontario, Ontario, Canada

6 University of Texas, San Antonio, USA

7 Sherbrooke University, Quebec, Canada

8 Research Center on Aging, Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada

9 University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada

10 University of Toronto, Ontario, Canada

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BMC Neurology 2010, 10:3  doi:10.1186/1471-2377-10-3

Published: 6 January 2010

Abstract

Background

More than 60% of new strokes each year are "mild" in severity and this proportion is expected to rise in the years to come. Within our current health care system those with "mild" stroke are typically discharged home within days, without further referral to health or rehabilitation services other than advice to see their family physician. Those with mild stroke often have limited access to support from health professionals with stroke-specific knowledge who would typically provide critical information on topics such as secondary stroke prevention, community reintegration, medication counselling and problem solving with regard to specific concerns that arise. Isolation and lack of knowledge may lead to a worsening of health problems including stroke recurrence and unnecessary and costly health care utilization.

The purpose of this study is to assess the effectiveness, for individuals who experience a first "mild" stroke, of a sustainable, low cost, multimodal support intervention (comprising information, education and telephone support) - "WE CALL" compared to a passive intervention (providing the name and phone number of a resource person available if they feel the need to) - "YOU CALL", on two primary outcomes: unplanned-use of health services for negative events and quality of life.

Method/Design

We will recruit 384 adults who meet inclusion criteria for a first mild stroke across six Canadian sites. Baseline measures will be taken within the first month after stroke onset. Participants will be stratified according to comorbidity level and randomised to one of two groups: YOU CALL or WE CALL. Both interventions will be offered over a six months period. Primary outcomes include unplanned use of heath services for negative event (frequency calendar) and quality of life (EQ-5D and Quality of Life Index). Secondary outcomes include participation level (LIFE-H), depression (Beck Depression Inventory II) and use of health services for health promotion or prevention (frequency calendar). Blind assessors will gather data at mid-intervention, end of intervention and one year follow up.

Discussion

If effective, this multimodal intervention could be delivered in both urban and rural environments. For example, existing infrastructure such as regional stroke centers and existing secondary stroke prevention clinics, make this intervention, if effective, deliverable and sustainable.

Trial Registration

ISRCTN95662526