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February 6, 2014
February 6, 2014
For the first time, guidelines have been developed for preventing stroke in women.
"A thorough review of all published studies supports new guidelines for stroke prevention in women," said Issam Awad, MD, director of neurovascular surgery at the University of Chicago Medicine, and co-author of the new scientific statement published in the American Heart Association journal Stroke.
"If a woman is pregnant and hypertensive, this will alter her management," Awad adds. "Particularly for the prevention of eclampsia in pregnant women, a stroke that occurs during labor and delivery. Other findings defined areas of urgently needed research."
The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association guidelines outline stroke risks unique to women and provide scientifically-based recommendations on how best to treat them, including:
High blood pressure, migraine with aura, atrial fibrillation, diabetes, depression and emotional stress are stroke risk factors that tend to be stronger or more common in women than in men. More studies need to be done to develop a female-specific score to identify women at risk for stroke, said study author Cheryl Bushnell, MD, director of the Stroke Center at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center.
The guidelines are geared to primary care providers, including OBGYNs.
Additional co-authors include Louise McCullough, M.D., Ph.D..; Monique Chireau, M.D., M.P.H.; Wende Fedder, D.N.P., R.N.; Karen Furie, M.D., M.P.H.; Virginia Howard, Ph.D., M.S.P.H.; Judith Lichtman, Ph.D., M.P.H.; Lynda D. Lisabeth, Ph.D., M.P.H.; Ileana Piña, M.D., M.P.H.; Mathew Reeves, Ph.D., D.V.M.; Kathryn M. Rexrode, M.D., M.P.H.; Gustavo Saposnik, M.D., M.Sc.; Vineeta Singh, M.D.; Amytis Towfighi, M.D.; Viola Vaccarino, M.D., Ph.D.; and Matthew Walters, M.D., M.B.Ch.B., M.Sc.
Adapted from a release by the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association.