Vol 48, No 6 (2014)
Review Article

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Current status of stroke epidemiology in Greece: A panorama

Angelo V. Vasiliadis1, Milorad Zikić2
DOI: 10.1016/j.pjnns.2014.11.001
Neurol Neurochir Pol 2014;48(6):449-457.


Although strokes have been documented since about 3 millennia, they remain today as one of the leading causes of mortality, as well as of subsequent serious long-term physical and mental morbidity, among patients in many different countries all over the world. Greece presents an increase in mortality rates according to World Health Organization, and this fact underlines the need for early diagnosis and treatment, as well as, the need to implement effective prevention strategies for strokes. This review makes an effort to describe the current status of stroke epidemiological features, as well as to present the risk factors prevalent in Greece. The incidence rate is 261–319/100,000 based on the recent population based registry. Stroke appears to be more prevalent in men than in women, and the mean age of stroke onset in Greece is at 70 years of age. Hypertension, atrial fibrillation, dyslipidaemia and diabetes mellitus are the major risk factors of stroke in the Greek population, while smoking is the most commonly documented modifiable risk factor in young adults with ischemic stroke. Similar to other parts of the world, ischemic stroke is the most common stroke type. The 28-day case fatality rate for men and women was 26.5%. The mean in-hospital cost per stroke patient was 3624.9 € and the mean rehabilitation cost of outpatients with stroke was 5553.3 €, while the cost proportion of hemorrhagic stroke is higher when compared to ischemic stroke. Stroke is a devastating condition with recognized challenges in identifying effective prevention programs. In Greece, limited data exists regarding the epidemiology of strokes. As a result, the need to conduct new studies and researches across the country is well documented.

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Neurologia i Neurochirurgia Polska