Study shows COVID-19 infection is a risk factor for acute strokes

Journal Name: American Journal of Neuroradiology: http://www.ajnr.org/content/ajnr/early/2020/06/25/ajnr.A6650.full.pdf

Title of the Article: COVID-19 is an independent risk factor for acute ischemic stroke.

Corresponding Author: Puneet Belani, MD, Assistant Professor at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital, Department of Radiology, Neuroradiology.

Bottom Line: COVID-19 infection is significantly associated with strokes, and patients with COVID-19 should undergo more aggressive monitoring for stroke.

Results: After adjusting for age, gender, and risk factors, COVID-19 infection had a significant independent association with acute ischemic stroke compared to control subjects (OR 3.9; 95% CI 1.7-8.9; p=0.001).

Why the Research Is Interesting: The first major peer-reviewed study to show that COVID-19 infection is a risk factor for acute strokes.

Who: Patients presenting to New York City hospital for suspicion of stroke during COVID-19 pandemic

When: March to April 2020 during COVID-19 pandemic

What: First major peer-reviewed paper showing COVID-19 can cause strokes

How: A retrospective case-control study with 123 patients presenting to the hospital for suspicion of stroke.

Comparing the group of patients with stroke versus non-stroke, we showed a significantly elevated number of patients with COVID-19 infection among the stroke group after stratifying for other known common stroke risk factors.

Study Conclusions: This is the first major peer-reviewed study to establish a link between SARS-CoV-2 infection and increased stroke risk when accounting for confounding risk factors.

Patients with COVID-19 should be evaluated early for acute neurological changes and timely workup should be performed in patients suspected to have a stroke to reduce morbidity and mortality.

This is the first major peer-reviewed study to show that COVID-19 infection is a risk factor for acute strokes. In a study of 123 patients presenting to our New York City Hospital System for suspicion of stroke during the COVID-19 pandemic from March to April 2020, we showed that COVID-19 infection is significantly associated with strokes."

Dr. Puneet Belani, Researcher, Mount Sinai School of Medicine

"Patients with COVID-19 should be evaluated early for acute neurological changes and timely workup should be performed in patients suspected to have a stroke to reduce morbidity and mortality."

Source:
Journal reference:

Belani, P., et al. (2020) COVID-19 Is an Independent Risk Factor for Acute Ischemic Stroke. American Journal of Neuroradiology. doi.org/10.3174/ajnr.A6650.

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