GUWAHATI, Oct 29 - Stroke has taken the form of an epidemic in India in recent times, with changing habits and sedentary lifestyles making the incidence of strokes more prevalent among Indians. No less alarming is the situation in Assam, where six persons get stroke every hour and two become disabled due to stroke every hour. Moreover, stroke kills two people every hour in the State. The yearly figure of stroke affected people in the State is 54,890.
These are the findings of a study released on the occasion of World Stroke Day in Guwahati today. The study, presented to the media by Guwahati-based multi-specialty hospital chain, GNRC Hospitals, was prepared by compiling and analysing data from records of over 25 years maintained by GNRC and various other publicly available sources.
The highest stroke incidence of 4,701 every year was reported from Nagaon district, while the lowest 355 every year was reported from Dima Hasao. On the other hand, 1.5 million people suffer from stroke in India in a year and 20 million suffer worldwide. Around 3,000-4,000 people suffer from stroke every day in India. Another alarming fact is that stroke kills more people in the country than HIV, tuberculosis and malaria combined. The burden of stroke is such that it renders 5 million people disabled every year all over the globe.
Speaking on the occasion, GNRC chairman-cum-managing director and neurologist Dr Nomal Chandra Borah said, �A stroke is a brain attack. It happens when the blood supply to part of your brain is cut off. It can be caused by a blockage in one of the blood vessels leading to the brain or a bleeding in the brain. Most strokes happen when a blood clot blocks the flow of blood to your brain. Blood clots usually form in areas where the arteries have become narrowed or �furred� up by fatty deposits. This is called atherosclerosis.�
Dr Bora said there were various factors for increased risk of having a stroke that include medical problems like diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol and lifestyle factors such as diet, drinking alcohol, taking drugs, smoking, etc.
�Though stroke has taken the form of an epidemic in India in recent times, the best part is, 80 per cent of the strokes are preventable with some minor shifts to our lifestyle and timely and accurate medical treatment,� he added.
On the occasion, GNRC Hospitals launched a special stroke screening package, which will help people determine their risk of having a stroke in their lifetime.
The World Stroke Organization�s theme for World Stroke Day 2015 is, �I am Woman.� This theme has been chosen because women are more at risk of having a stroke and more likely to die from a stroke than a man.