Open Access Highly Accessed Study protocol

Risk factors and prognosis of young stroke. The FUTURE study: A prospective cohort study. Study rationale and protocol

Loes CA Rutten-Jacobs1, Noortje AM Maaijwee1, Renate M Arntz1, Mayte E Van Alebeek1, Pauline Schaapsmeerders2, Henny C Schoonderwaldt1, Lucille DA Dorresteijn3, Sebastiaan Overeem1, Gea Drost1, Mirian C Janssen4, Waander L van Heerde5, Roy PC Kessels267, Marcel P Zwiers89, David G Norris9, Maureen J van der Vlugt10, Ewoud J van Dijk1 and Frank-Erik de Leeuw1*

Author Affiliations

1 Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour, Centre for Neuroscience, Department of Neurology, Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre, PO Box 9101, 6500 HB Nijmegen, The Netherlands

2 Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre, Department of Medical Psychology, Radboud, 6500 HB Nijmegen, The Netherlands

3 Medisch Spectrum Twente, Department of Neurology, P.O. Box 50 000, 7500 KA, Enschede, The Netherlands

4 Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre, Department of Internal Medicine, PO Box 9101, 6500 HB Nijmegen, The Netherlands

5 Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre, Central Laboratory for Haematology, PO Box 9101, 6500 HB Nijmegen, The Netherlands

6 Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre, Department of Geriatrics, Radboud, 6500 HB Nijmegen, The Netherlands

7 Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour, Centre for Cognition, Radboud University Nijmegen, 6500 HE, The Netherlands

8 Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour, Centre for Neuroscience, Department of Psychiatry, Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre, The Netherlands

9 Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour, Centre for Cognitive Neuroimaging, Radboud University Nijmegen, 6500 HE Nijmegen, The Netherlands

10 Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Centre, Department of Cardiology, PO Box 9101, 6500 HB Nijmegen, The Netherlands

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BMC Neurology 2011, 11:109  doi:10.1186/1471-2377-11-109

Published: 20 September 2011

Abstract

Background

Young stroke can have devastating consequences with respect to quality of life, the ability to work, plan or run a family, and participate in social life. Better insight into risk factors and the long-term prognosis is extremely important, especially in young stroke patients with a life expectancy of decades. To date, detailed information on risk factors and the long-term prognosis in young stroke patients, and more specific risk of mortality or recurrent vascular events, remains scarce.

Methods/Design

The FUTURE study is a prospective cohort study on risk factors and prognosis of young ischemic and hemorrhagic stroke among 1006 patients, aged 18-50 years, included in our study database between 1-1-1980 and 1-11-2010. Follow-up visits at our research centre take place from the end of 2009 until the end of 2011. Control subjects will be recruited among the patients' spouses, relatives or social environment. Information on mortality and incident vascular events will be retrieved via structured questionnaires. In addition, participants are invited to the research centre to undergo an extensive sub study including MRI.

Discussion

The FUTURE study has the potential to make an important contribution to increase the knowledge on risk factors and long-term prognosis in young stroke patients. Our study differs from previous studies by having a maximal follow-up of more than 30 years, including not only TIA and ischemic stroke but also hemorrhagic stroke, the addition of healthy controls and prospectively collect data during an extensive follow-up visit. Completion of the FUTURE study may provide better information for treating physicians and patients with respect to the prognosis of young stroke.