Open Access Study protocol

Observational Dutch Young Symptomatic StrokE studY (ODYSSEY): study rationale and protocol of a multicentre prospective cohort study

Renate M Arntz1, Mayte E van Alebeek1, Nathalie E Synhaeve23, Paul J Brouwers4, Gert W van Dijk5, Rob A Gons6, Tom den Heijer7, Paul LM de Kort23, Karlijn F de Laat8, Anouk G van Norden9, Sarah E Vermeer10, Maureen J van der Vlugt11, Roy PC Kessels1213, Ewoud J van Dijk1 and Frank-Erik de Leeuw1*

Author Affiliations

1 Radboud University Medical Center, Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour, Center for Neuroscience, department of Neurology, PO Box 9101, 6500, HB Nijmegen, the Netherlands

2 Department of Neurology, St. Elisabeth Hospital, PO Box 90151, 5000, LC Tilburg, the Netherlands

3 Department of Neurology, TweeSteden Hospital, PO Box 90107, 5000, LA Tilburg, the Netherlands

4 Department of Neurology, Medisch Spectrum Twente, PO Box 50000, 7500, KA Enschede, the Netherlands

5 Department of Neurology, Canisius-Wilhelmina Hospital, PO Box 9015, 6500, GS Nijmegen, the Netherlands

6 Department of Neurology, Catharina Hospital, PO Box 1350, 5602, ZA Eindhoven, the Netherlands

7 Department of Neurology, Sint Franciscus Gasthuis, PO Box 109000, 3004, BA Rotterdam, the Netherlands

8 Department of Neurology, Haga Hospital, PO Box 40551, 2504, LN Den Haag, Netherlands

9 Department of Neurology, Amphia Hospital, PO Box 90157, 4800, RL Breda, the Netherlands

10 Department of Neurology, Rijnstate Hospital, PO Box 9555, 6800, TA Arnhem, the Netherlands

11 Radboud University Medical Centre, department of Cardiology, PO Box 9101, 6500, HB Nijmegen, the Netherlands

12 Department of Medical Psychology, Radboud University Medical Centre, PO Box 9101, 6500, HB Nijmegen, the Netherlands

13 Donders Institute for Brain, Radboud University Nijmegen, Cognition and Behaviour, Nijmegen, the Netherlands

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BMC Neurology 2014, 14:55  doi:10.1186/1471-2377-14-55

Published: 22 March 2014



The proportion of strokes occurring in younger adults has been rising over the past decade. Due to the far longer life expectancy in the young, stroke in this group has an even larger socio-economic impact. However, information on etiology and prognosis remains scarce.


ODYSSEY is a multicentre prospective cohort study on the prognosis and risk factors of patients with a first-ever TIA, ischemic stroke or intracerebral hemorrhage aged 18 to 49 years. Our aim is to include 1500 patients. Primary outcome will be all cause mortality and risk of recurrent vascular events. Secondary outcome will be the risk of post-stroke epilepsy and cognitive impairment. Patients will complete structured questionnaires on outcome measures and risk factors. Both well-documented and less well-documented risk factors and potentially acute trigger factors will be investigated. Patients will be followed every 6 months for at least 3 years. In addition, an extensive neuropsychological assessment will be administered both at baseline and 1 year after the stroke/TIA. Furthermore we will include 250 stroke-free controls, who will complete baseline assessment and one neuropsychological assessment.


ODYSSEY is designed to prospectively determine prognosis after a young stroke and get more insight into etiology of patients with a TIA, ischemic stroke and intracerebral hemorrhage in patients aged 18 to 49 years old in a large sample size.

Young adults; Stroke; TIA; Prognosis; Risk factors