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Stroke Incidence Up in Chinese Versus White Population

MONDAY, July 15 (HealthDay News) -- Chinese populations have slightly higher overall stroke incidence and a higher proportion of intracerebral hemorrhage, compared with white populations, according to a review published in the July 16 issue of Neurology.

Chung-Fen Tsai, M.D., from the University of Edinburgh in the United Kingdom, and colleagues reviewed the literature to identify studies conducted since 1990 in Chinese populations to examine the incidence of first-ever stroke (community-based studies only) and pathologic types/subtypes of stroke (hospital- or community-based studies of first-ever or recurrent strokes). A recently published systematic review was used to identify community-based studies in white populations. The age-standardized stroke incidence was calculated.

The researchers found that the annual first-ever stroke incidence was higher among Chinese populations than white populations (for ages 45 to 74 years, range 205 to 584 versus 170 to 335 per 100,000, respectively), based on community studies. A larger and more variable proportion of strokes resulted from intracerebral hemorrhage in China (range, 27 to 51 percent) versus Taiwan (range 17 to 28 percent), in Chinese community-based (27 to 51 percent) versus hospital-based studies (17 to 30 percent), and in community-based Chinese versus white studies (pooled proportion, 33 versus 12 percent). Variable study methodologies prevented reliable comparisons, although the overall proportion of lacunar ischemic stroke seemed higher in Chinese versus white populations.

"There is good evidence for a slightly higher overall stroke incidence and higher proportion of intracerebral hemorrhage in Chinese versus white populations, but no clear evidence for different distributions of ischemic stroke subtypes," the authors write.

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