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Stroke Patients Benefit From Early Lipid-Lowering Therapy

In-hospital initiation associated with better clinical outcomes after ischemic stroke, TIA

THURSDAY, June 3 (HealthDay News) -- Early initiation of lipid-lowering therapy (LLT) during hospitalization for ischemic stroke or transient ischemic attack correlates with improved clinical outcomes, according to research published in the May 15 issue of the American Journal of Cardiology.

Poh-Shiow Yeh, M.D., of the Chi-Mei Medical Center in Tainan, Taiwan, and colleagues analyzed data on 16,704 adult patients previously not taking LLT and admitted for and surviving acute ischemic stroke or transient ischemic attack to evaluate the effect of LLT on the composite outcome of recurrent stroke, ischemic heart disease, and all-cause death.

The researchers found that, at time of discharge, 4,032 patients (24 percent) had received LLT. Six months later, 206 patients (5.1 percent) in the LLT group and 964 patients (7.6 percent) who did not receive LLT had developed one or more components of the composite end point. After adjusting for various potential confounders, the researchers found that use of LLT at discharge was linked to a lower rate of the composite outcome six months later (hazard ratio, 0.78).

"In conclusion, our data have indicated that LLT has been underused in patients with stroke. In-hospital initiation of LLT was associated with a better clinical outcome in patients with ischemic stroke or transient ischemic attack," the authors write.

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