Now a day’s stroke is the main cause of death of people worldwide and it also the leading cause of disability.A report says more than 795,000 Americans affected by stroke each year in USA. Now stroke is the 5th leading cause of death in the US, with one person dying every 4minutes as a result. For black people, stroke is the 3rd leading cause of death.
So can you even thought how many people die in stroke each year worldwide? However, if doctors were better able to predict who is likely to have a stroke, providing greater opportunity for prevention? Researchers have uncovered four biomarkers that could help do just that.
Generally stroke occurs when the flow of oxygen-rich blood to the brain is reduced, causing brain cell death. There are two main types of stroke: ischemic, due to lack of blood flow, and hemorrhagic,due to bleeding. They result in part of the brain not functioning properly.Signs and symptoms of a stroke may include an inability to move or feel on one side of the body, problems understanding or speaking, feeling like the world is spinning, or loss of vision to one side among others. Signs and symptoms often appear soon after the stroke has occurred. If symptoms last less than one or two hours it is known as a transient ischemic attack (TIA). Hemorrhagic strokes may also be associated with a severe headache. The symptoms of a stroke can be permanent. Long term complications may include pneumonia or loss of bladder control.
Recently a research article was published in the journal ‘Neurology’;researchers found that individuals who had higher levels of four inflammatory biomarkers in their blood were at greater risk for stroke than those with lower levels.
Co-author of the research study Dr. Ashkan Shoamanesh, of McMaster University in Canada, and colleagues say that - while further research is needed to determine whether these biomarkers could be used in clinical practice - their findings could pave the way for better prevention and treatment of stroke.
As reported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in the U.S., stroke kills more than 130,000 Americans each year - accounting for 1 in every 20 deaths.
High cholesterol, high blood pressure and smoking are among the major risk factors for stroke, and tools such as the Framingham Stroke Risk Profile take these factors into account when being used to assess a person's stroke risk.
Dr. Shoamanesh and team suggest adding four new biomarkers to stroke risk assessments could improve prediction capability.
Nearly about 33 percent greater stroke risk with high biomarker levels
For reaching their findings, the researchers analyzed data from the Framingham Heart Study Offspring Cohort, which included3,224 subjects of an average age of 61 years with no history of stroke.
The researchers took Blood samples from the participants at study baseline and assessed for the presence of 15 inflammatory biomarkers. The researchers note that inflammatory cascades are believed to play a role in ischemic stroke, whereby a vessel supplying blood to the brain becomes blocked.
Above an average follow-up period of 9 years, 98participants experienced stroke, the researchers report.
Looking at subjects' blood samples, the team found that high levels of four biomarkers were cause of greater stroke risk during the 9-year follow-up. The four biomarkers are as follows:
- In-tumor necrosis factor receptor 2; a 33 percent increased stroke risk
- Homocysteine;a 32 percent increased risk
- In-C reactive protein; a 28 percent increased risk
- Vascular endothelial growth factor; a 25 percent increased risk.
Dr. Shoamanesh tells that these findings are purely observational, so they are unable to conclude that high levels of these biomarkers cause stroke.
He also points out that biomarker levels were only measured once in the study, and there were a number of possible confounding factors that were not accounted for, such as presence of infection sand chronic diseases.
Additionally, the study only included individuals of European ancestry, so the results may not be same to other populations.
Yet, the researcher team is encouraged by their findings, and they suggest that including the four biomarkers in the Framingham Stroke Risk Profile could better pinpoint patients who are likely to experience stroke.
"Identifying people who are at risk for stroke can help us determine who would benefit most from existing or new therapies to prevent stroke.
Future research could also investigate whether lowering the levels of these biomarkers or blocking their action could be a way to prevent strokes. However, our study does not provide evidence that these markers are validated well enough to be implemented in clinical practice."