Common Infections Linked to Pediatric Strokes – Vaccines May Reduce Risk
[Source: Medical XPress]
Common infections are associated with a significantly higher chance of stroke in children, but routine vaccinations may help decrease risk, according to preliminary research presented at the American Stroke Association’s International Stroke Conference 2014.
“The protective association of routine vaccination against childhood stroke provides a widely available means of prevention, and this information can easily be dispersed by pediatric healthcare providers,” said Nancy Hills, Ph.D., M.B.A., lead researcher and assistant professor of neurology at the University of California, San Francisco Medical Center.
The international study, Vascular effects of Infection in Pediatric Stroke (VIPS) is a prospective study examining the link between infections and ischemic stroke, the most common type of stroke. (Ischemic stroke is caused by a clot that blocks blood flow in or leading to the brain.)
Previous research by Hills and co-authors found that minor infections were related to an increased risk, but it was unclear whether infection actually could help predict future stroke.
In the VIPS study, researchers found that common infections within the past week were linked to more than six times the risk of stroke, Hills said. Seventeen percent of the stroke patients vs. 3 percent of the non-stroke patients were reported to have had any minor infection in the prior week. The most frequent types of infection were colds and other upper respiratory infections (8 percent of the stroke and 2.4 percent of the non-stroke patients reported an occurrence of these kinds of infections in the prior week).
However, routine vaccinations were associated with a lower stroke risk.
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