• coagulation;
  • plasminogen activator inhibitor;
  • South Asians;
  • stroke;
  • gender

To investigate gender differences in conventional, coagulation and fibrinolytic factors in South Asian ischaemic stroke patients, we compared these variables in 50 South Asian females (SAFP) with 90 South Asian males (SAMP) with ischaemic stroke and in 52 females (SAFC) and 38 males (SAMC) without stroke. Plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1) antigen levels were significantly higher in SAFP compared with SAMP (18·2 vs. 13·3 U/ml, P = 0·04) even after adjustment for known covariates, but there was no difference in PAI-1 antigen levels between males and females in the control group. South Asian females exhibited higher levels of factor VII antigen and FVII:C activity in both stroke patients (114 vs. 99% in males, P = 0·01; 116 versus 104% in males, P = 0·04) and controls (116 vs. 97% in males, P = 0·004; 115 vs. 93% in males, P = 0·01). There were no significant differences in the levels of fibrinogen (3·8 vs. 3·7 g/l), FXIIa (2·2 vs. 2·4 ng/ml), von Willebrand factor (1·8 vs. 1·9 IU/ml) and tissue plasminogen activator (11·4 vs. 12·0 ng/ml) in SAMP and SAFP respectively. These results suggest that South Asian females have increased FVII levels and that females with a history of ischaemic stroke have a decreased fibrinolytic potential in comparison with males.