Stroke unit care improved survival and function for 5 years after an acute stroke

Richard L Harvey*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Objective To determine whether stroke unit (SU) care improves survival and functional status and increases the proportion of patients living at home after 5 years. Design Randomized controlled trial with 5-year follow-up. Setting University hospital in Norway. Patients 220 patients (mean age 73 y, 51 % men) hospitalized with acute stroke. Exclusion criteria were {subdural hematoma, subarachnoid hemorrhage, symptoms for 1 week, deep coma at admission, or residence in a nursing home before onset of symptoms. Intervention 110 patients were allocated to care in the 6-bed SU: {a standardized program of up to 42 days of diagnostic evaluation, treatment for the acute phase of disease rehabilitation, and family and patient education from a staff team}. 110 patients were allocated to medical care, physiotherapy, and occupational therapy on a general ward. Main outcome measures Survival, proportion of patients living at home, and functional status measured by the Barthel Index (BI). Main results Intention-to-treat analysis was used. At 5 years, Kaplan-Aleier survival curve analysis showed that survival was higher in the SU group than in the ward care group (41% vs 29%, P = 0.04). More patients who received SU care were living at home (P = 0.006), were independent (BI score 95) (P = 0.004), or were at least partly independent (BI score 60) (P = 0.006) (Table). The groups did not differ for help or support received at home. Conclusion Stroke unit care improved long-term survival and functional status and increased the number of patients living at home. s.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Number of pages1
JournalEvidence-Based Medicine
Volume3
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 1 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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