Anemia Triples Risk Of Death After Stroke
February 6, 2012 by UPI - United Press International, Inc.
NEW HAVEN, Conn., Feb. 4 (UPI) — Being anemic could triple the risk of dying within a year after having a stroke, said researchers at Yale University School of Medicine in New Haven, Conn.
Lead researcher Dr. Jason Sico, an assistant professor of neurology at Yale University School of Medicine, said anemia is a common condition in which the body does not have enough healthy red blood cells. Without red blood cells to carry oxygen throughout the body, fatigue, shortness of breath, rapid heartbeat and other symptoms can occur, Sico said.
Previous research has shown anemic people are more likely than others to die within a year of having a heart attack, heart failure or kidney disease, Sico said.
Sico and colleagues reviewed medical records of 3,750 men treated for a first ischemic stroke at 131 Veterans Health Administration facilities in 2007. Ischemic stroke, the most common type of stroke, occurs when a blood vessel to the brain is blocked.
Compared to stroke survivors who were not anemic, patients with severe anemia were 3.5 times more likely to die while still in the hospital and 2.5 times more likely to die within a year.
Stroke survivors with moderate anemia were twice as likely to die within six to 12 months after a stroke, while people with mild anemia were about 1.5 times more likely to die within six to 12 months after a stroke, the study found.