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Lancet Neurol. 2007 Jun;6(6):553-61.

Acute treatment and long-term management of stroke in developing countries.

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Centre of Clinical Neurosciences, Department of Clinical Medicine and Preventive Medicine, Danube University, Austria.


Developing countries have some of the highest stroke mortality rates in the world that account for over two-thirds of stroke deaths worldwide. Hospital-based studies suggest that the patterns of stroke types and causes of stroke differ between developing and developed countries, resulting in differing needs for acute and long-term care. Data on stroke care provision in developing countries are sparse and most of the available studies are biased towards urban settings in reasonably resourced health-care systems. A general overview shows that the quality and quantity of stroke care is largely patchy in low-income and middle-income countries, with areas of excellence intermixed with areas of severe need, depending upon patients' location, socioeconomic status, education, and cultural beliefs. Here we review the available literature on acute and long-term stroke management in developing countries. On the basis of available studies, largely from developed countries, we discuss the need to develop basic organised stroke-unit care in developing countries.

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