Long-term disability after stroke in Iran: Evidence from the Mashhad Stroke Incidence Study
International Journal of Stroke
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Background: Accurate information about disability rate after stroke remains largely unclear in many countries. Population-based studies are necessary to estimate the rate and determinants of disability after stroke. Methods: Patients were recruited from the Mashhad Stroke Incidence Study and followed for five years after their index event. Disability was measured using the modified Rankin scale and functional dependency was measured using the Barthel index. Results: Among 684 patients registered in this study, 624 were first-ever strokes. In total, 69.0% (n = 409) of patients either died or remained disabled at five-year follow-up. Among the first-ever stroke survivors, 18.5% (n = 69) at one year and 15.9% (n = 31) at five years required major assistance in their daily activities. Patients with a history of stroke (before the study period) compared with first-ever strokes were more likely to be disabled at one year (modified Rankin scale>2 in 40.0% vs. 19.1%; P < 0.001). Advanced age, severity of stroke at the time of admission, diabetes mellitus, and educational level (<12 years) were independently associated with greater disability and functional dependency. Conclusion: We found that significant disability and functional dependency after stroke in Northeast Iran were largely attributable to the effects of stroke severity and prior dependency.