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Minor stroke victims 'unaware of attacks'

16th April 2010

New research has shown people are not seeking prompt treatment for minor strokes, leading to calls for more education about the condition.

A study by the University of Oxford, published in Stroke: Journal of the American Heart Association, found that up to 70 per cent of patients were not aware they had suffered a minor stroke.

The research, which analysed 541 people who had suffered a minor stroke and 459 who had transient ischemic attacks, also discovered that one-third of patients did not seek medical attention for more than 24 hours after the incident.

Arvind Chandratheva, a clinical research fellow in the Stroke Prevention Research Unit at the University of Oxford, said people in all age, gender, education and socioeconomic status demographics showed a lack of awareness in how to recognise the symptoms of the condition.

'There has been very little sustained public education [about minor attacks], but for a prolonged impact, sustained national campaigns are required,' he added.

According to the Stroke Association, around 150,000 people experience a stroke each year in the UK, equating to an attack around every five minutes.

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