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Long-term neuropsychological and functional outcomes in stroke survivors: current evidence and perspectives for new research

Authors


Associate Professor Valery L. Feigin*, Clinical Trials Research Unit, School of Population Health and Department of Medicine, Faculty of Health & Medical Sciences, University of Auckland, PO Box 92019, Auckland, New Zealand. Tel: +64 9 3737599 ext. 84728; Fax: +64 9 3731710; e-mail: v.feigin@ctru.auckland.ac.nz

Abstract

Aims To appraise the literature on long-term neuropsychological and functional outcomes in stroke survivors and identify the gaps, challenges and future research in this area.

Background Stroke care resources are scarce, and the number of stroke survivors is likely to increase with the ageing of the population. Thus, evaluating the cost, frequency and prognostic factors of long-terms stroke functional and neuropsychological outcomes is of paramount importance for evidence-based clinical decision making, including the rationale, planning, provision and allocation of health services, and the development of effective interventions.

Summary of review Stroke has an enormous physical, emotional and economic impact on the patients, families and society. However, accurate data on frequency, relationship and predictors of various long-term functional (body functioning, activity and participation) outcomes and costs of stroke are scarce, and no accurate and comprehensive data exist on long-term neuropsychological outcomes and their relationships with other functional outcomes poststroke.

Conclusions There is a lack of accurate data on the frequency, relationship and predictors of various long-term functional outcomes and costs of stroke. There is a pressing need for good-quality population-based studies for evaluating the frequency and prognostic factors of long-term functional and neuropsychological outcomes of stroke in various populations.

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