Variation in the management of acute physiological parameters after ischaemic stroke: a European perspective

A Bhalla, K Tilling, P Kolominsky-Rabas, P Heuschmann, S E Megherbi, A Czlonkowska, A Kobayashi, T Mendel, M Giroud, A Rudd, C Wolfe

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32 Citations (Scopus)


Studies have shown significant variation in stroke case fatality across Europe. These variations suggest the need to explore whether differences in physiological support in acute stroke exist across Europe. Data were collected in four European centres over 6 months. These included clinical status and management of acute physiology (hydration, oxygenation, nutrition, hypertension, hyperglycaemia and temperature in the first week of ischaemic stroke) and survival at 3 months. Differences in acute supportive care between centres were adjusted for case mix. Patients admitted to centres in London (n = 106), Dijon (n = 95), Erlangen (n = 91) and Warsaw (n = 72) were studied. There were significant differences in incontinence, dysphasia, dysphagia, conscious level, pyrexia, hyperglycaemia and comorbidity between centres. After adjusting for case mix, there were significant differences in intravenous fluid use (P = 0.04), enteral feeding (P = 0.003), initiation of new antihypertensive therapy (P = 0.0006) and insulin therapy (P = 0.004) between centres, with the London centre having the lowest uptake of interventions. Three-month case fatality rates varied from 10 to 28%. This pilot study shows significant variation in acute physiological support in acute stroke across four European centres, which remains unexplained by case mix. Further research is required to link variation in acute care with stroke outcome, to identify which interventions appear to be the most effective.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)25 - 33
Number of pages9
JournalEuropean Journal of Neurology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2003


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