Tuberculosis survivors at risk of stroke

11 Sep 2022
Tuberculosis survivors at risk of stroke

Patients who have been treated for tuberculosis appear to have an elevated risk of ischaemic stroke compared with their counterparts who have never had the infection, according to a study.

Researchers used data from the Korean National Health Insurance Service, which covers almost the entire Korean population. They identified tuberculosis survivors and age- and sex-matched controls without the infection. These participants were followed up from 1 year after tuberculosis diagnosis to the date of ischaemic stroke event, date of death, or until the end of the study period.

Over a follow-up period of 3.8 years for patients with tuberculosis and matched nontuberculosis controls, incident cases of ischaemic stroke were documented in 1.3 percent of participants in the tuberculosis group (941 out of 72,863) and in 1.0 percent of those in the control group (707 out of 72,863).

Multivariable Cox proportional hazard regression confirmed that the tuberculosis group had a significantly higher overall risk of ischaemic stroke compared with the control group (adjusted hazard ratio, 1.22, 95 percent confidence interval, 1.10–1.36).

On further analysis, patients with tuberculosis were found to have an increased risk of ischaemic stroke regardless of their age, sex, smoking status, alcohol consumption, physical activity, body mass index, and Charlson Comorbidity Index score.

The findings highlight the importance of tuberculosis as a risk factor for the incidence of ischaemic stroke.

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