Researchers analyzed data from the Northern Manhattan Stroke Study, an ongoing study of 3,300 people who live in New York City.
They found that living in a neighborhood with a greater than average proportion of people who are poor, unemployed and on public assistance is an independent risk factor for stroke. That applies to blacks, Hispanics and whites who live in those areas.
This is the first study to use census tract data and individual socioeconomic factors to make the connection between an increased risk of stroke and living in a disadvantaged community.
The researchers suggest limited access to critical resources may be a reason for the increased stroke risk in poor neighborhoods.
The findings are being presented Feb. 14 at the American Stroke Association's conference in Phoenix.
Here's where you can learn more about stroke.