Stroke deaths halved in England over ten years, study shows
Stroke deaths in England halved in the decade up to 2010 as a result of overhauls which saw more patients taken to specialist centres, a review has found.
There was a 55 per cent drop in the death rates for strokes, caused when the blood supply to parts of the brain is cut off by a clot or bleed, according to the study published in the British Medical Journal (BMJ).
While the number of strokes occurring fell by around 20 per cent, the major driver of was that more people were surviving, the University of Oxford researchers said - however this can be costly.
"Acute and long-term management of such patients is expensive, and the NHS is already spending about 5 per cent of its budget on stroke care," the authors said, "By focusing on prevention and reducing the occurrence of stroke, major resources can be conserved."
There was also a concerning 2 per cent rise in the stroke rate among people aged between 35 and 54, the authors said.
"This suggests that stroke prevention needs to be strengthened to reduce the occurrence of stroke in people younger than 55 years."
The researchers analysed data from almost 800,000 adults in England who were admitted to hospital with acute stroke or who died from a stroke between 2001 and 2010.