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JOURNAL ARTICLE

Stroke and unsteadiness - a cross-sectional study from primary health care

Eva Ekvall Hansson, Anders Beckman, Anna Näslund, Sylvia Persson, Sara Janson, Margareta Troein
NeuroRehabilitation 2014, 34 (2): 221-6
24401823

BACKGROUND: Dizziness is seldom the only symptom among patients who develop stroke but patients, hospitalized for vertigo are at higher risk of stroke than the general population. The proportions of patients who have remaining dizziness after a stroke seem to be unclear.

OBJECTIVES: To study the frequency of dizziness among stroke patients referred to rehabilitation in primary health care and to study the relation between dizziness and gender, age, activity and self-rated health.

METHODS: Patients with first-time stroke who were referred to rehabilitation in primary health care after the initial hospital stay were included. Dependence/independence in daily activities and self-rated health was measured. A question about whether the patient had experienced any dizziness or unsteadiness was asked.

RESULTS: Sixty three patients were included in the study, (39 men, 24 women) aged 36-85 years. The majority of patients were dizzy (70%). Being female increased the risk of being dizzy substantially (OR 9.43). Patients with dizziness had poorer self-rated health than patients without dizziness (p = 0.001).

CONCLUSION: Dizziness is a common symptom among patients with stroke, especially among female patients, and is associated with lower self-rated health. Therefore, it is important to address dizziness in the rehabilitation of stroke patients.

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