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Open Access Research article

Lessons from everyday stroke care for clinical research and vice versa: comparison of a comprehensive and a research population of young stroke patients

Christian Tanislav1*, Ulrike Grittner23, Bjoern Misselwitz4, Gerhard Jan Jungehuelsing2, Christian Enzinger5, Bettina von Sarnowski6, Jukka Putaala7, Manfred Kaps1, Peter Kropp8, Arndt Rolfs9, Turgut Tatlisumak7, Franz Fazekas5, Edwin Kolodny10 and Bo Norrving11

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Neurology, Justus Liebig University, Klinikstrasse 33, 35392 Giessen, Germany

2 Center for Stroke Research, Charité – University Medical Centre Berlin, Berlin, Germany

3 Department for Biostatistics and Clinical Epidemiology, Charité – University Medical Centre Berlin, Berlin, Germany

4 Institute of Quality Assurance Hesse (Geschäftsstelle Qualitätssicherung Hessen; GQH), Eschborn/Frankfurt, Germany

5 Department of Neurology, Medical University of Graz, Graz, Austria

6 Department of Neurology, University Medicine, Ernst Moritz Arndt University, Greifswald, Germany

7 Department of Neurology, Helsinki University Central Hospital, Helsinki, Finland

8 Institute of Medical Psychology and Medical Sociology Medical Faculty, University of Rostock, Rostock, Germany

9 Albrecht-Kossel Institute for Neuroregeneration, University of Rostock, Rostock, Germany

10 New York University School of Medicine, New York, USA

11 Department of Neurology, Lund University Hospital, Lund, Sweden

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BMC Neurology 2014, 14:45  doi:10.1186/1471-2377-14-45

Published: 7 March 2014

Abstract

Background

Translating knowledge derived from medical research into the clinical setting is dependent on the representativeness of included patients. Therefore we compared baseline data of patients included in a recent large study addressing young stroke in comparison to a large representative stroke registry.

Methods

We analysed baseline data of 5023 patients (age 18-55 years) with an acute cerebrovascular event included in the sifap1 (Stroke in Young Fabry Patients) study. For comparison 17007 stroke patients (age 18-55 years) documented (2004-2010) in a statutory stroke registry of the Institute of Quality Assurance Hesse of the Federal State of Hesse (GQH), Germany.

Results

Among 17007 juvenile (18-55 years) patients identified in the GQH registry 15997 had an ischaemic stroke or TIA (91%) or an intracranial haemorrhage (9%). In sifap1 5023 subjects were included. Sex distribution was comparable (men: 59% sifap1 versus 60.5% GQH) whereas age differed between the groups: median age was 46 years in sifap1 versus 49 years in GQH. Slightly higher percentages for diabetes mellitus and hypertension in the GQH registry were noted. There were no differences in stroke severity as assessed by NIHSS (median 3) and mRS (median 2). In patients with ischaemic stroke or TIA (n = 4467 sifap1; n = 14522 GQH) higher rates of strokes due to small artery occlusion and atherosclerosis occurred in older age groups; cardioembolism and strokes of other determined cause occurred more frequently in younger patients.

Conclusions

The comparison of baseline characteristics between the sifap1 study and the GQH registry revealed differences mainly determined by age.

Keywords:
Ischemic stroke; Stroke in the young; Stroke severity; Stroke registry