Canadian researchers suggest patients who suffer delirium and are hospitalized following stroke may exhibit poorer outcomes than those who do not develop delirium. The systematic analysis was led by Qiyun Shi, MD, and encompassed more than 2,000 patients hospitalized following a stroke facilitated by vessel blockage or bleeding. The research findings were published in Stroke: Journal of the American Heart Association

Researchers report that they searched multiple databases that included MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL, Cochrane Library, and Pscyhinfo for relevant articles. Following the analysis of 10 studies that met the inclusion criteria, researchers say that 10% to 28% of patients were admitted with acute stroke developed delirium. One study’s results suggested a 48% incidence of delirium in stroke patients. The risk of death was also five times higher in stroke patients with delirium during hospitalization or within a year of hospitalization than stroke patients without the condition, the study says. 

The study adds that stroke patients who develop delirium are three times more likely to be discharged to a long term care facility and require hospitalization 9 days longer than their counterparts without delirium. 

The study authors conclude that, “Stroke patients with development of delirium have unfavorable outcomes, particularly higher mortality, longer hospitalizations, and a greater degree of dependence after discharge.”

The study authors add that early recognition and prevention of delirium may help improve outcomes in stroke patient recovery. 

Source: Stroke: Journal of the American Heart Association