Background: Little is known about the risk of recurrent stroke in low- and middle-income countries. This study was designed to identify the long-term risk of stroke recurrence and its associated factors. Methods: From November 21, 2006 for a period of 1 year, 624 patients with first-ever stroke (FES) were registered from the residents of 3 neighborhoods in Mashhad, Iran. Patients were followed up for the next 5 years after the index event for any stroke recurrence or death. We used competing risk analysis and cause-specific Cox proportional hazard models to estimate the cumulative incidence of stroke recurrence and its associated variables. Results: The cumulative incidence of stroke recurrence was 14.5% by the end of 5 years, with the largest rate during the first year after FES (5.6%). Only advanced age (adjusted hazard ratio [HR] 1.02; 95% CI 1.01–1.04) and severe stroke (National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale score >20; HR 2.23; 95% CI 1.05–4.74) were independently associated with an increased risk of 5-year recurrence. Case fatality at 30 days after first recurrent stroke was 43.2%, which was significantly greater than the case fatality at 30 days after FES of 24.7% (p = 0.001). Conclusion: A substantial number of our patients either died or had stroke recurrences during the study period. Advanced age and the severity of the index stroke significantly increased the risk of recurrence. This is an important finding for health policy makers and for designing preventive strategies in people surviving their stroke.
- Middle East
- Recurrence rate