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Open Access Research article

Risk factors and in-hospital outcomes in stroke and myocardial infarction patients

Mario Ivanusa1* and Zrinka Ivanusa2

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Internal Medicine, Bjelovar General Hospital, HR-43000 Bjelovar, Croatia

2 Department of Neurology, Bjelovar General Hospital, HR-43000 Bjelovar, Croatia

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BMC Public Health 2004, 4:26  doi:10.1186/1471-2458-4-26

Published: 5 July 2004

Abstract

Background

Acute stroke (AS) and acute myocardial infarction (AMI) share major risk factors such as age, gender, and high blood pressure. The main objective of this study was to compare vascular risk factor profiles with in-hospital outcomes in AS and AMI patients.

Methods

We evaluated 486 consecutive patients who were admitted to Bjelovar General Hospital with diagnoses of AS (ischaemic stroke or intracerebral haemorrhage; N = 380) or AMI (N = 106) during a one year period. The frequency of risk factors and in-patient mortality rates were assessed in both groups. For statistical analysis we used t-tests and χ2 tests.

Results

AS patients were significantly older than AMI patients: the mean age for AS patients was 68.9 ± 9.1 years, and for AMI patients was 62.8 ± 11.7 years (p < 0.001). AMI was significantly more common than AS in patients younger than 65 years; 51% of this group had AMI and 26% had AS (p < 0.001). Hypertension was a more common risk factor in AS patients (69% AS patients vs. 58% AMI patients; p = 0.042). Patients who died did not differ significantly in age between the groups. In-patient mortality rates were significantly higher in AS than AMI cases (31% vs. 12%, p < 0.001 for all patients; 37% vs.5%, p < 0.001 for men). Women hospitalized for AMI were more likely to die in hospital than men (28% vs. 5%; p = 0.002).

Conclusions

We found that age at the time of presentation was a significant differentiating factor between patients with AS and AMI. The only exceptions were women, whose ages at the onset of AS and AMI were similar. In contrast, patients who died did not differ significantly in age. We observed significantly higher inpatient mortality for men (when adjusted for age) than for women with AS. The five-fold higher in-patient mortality rate in women than in men with AMI is most likely to have resulted from other factors related to treatment.