Recurrent stroke patients suffer significant morbidity and mortality, representing almost 30% of the stroke population. Our objective was to determine the clinical outcomes and costs of recurrent ischemic stroke (recurrent-IS).
Our study protocol was registered with the International Prospective Register of Systematic Reviews (CRD42020192709). Following PRISMA guidelines, our medical librarian conducted a search in EMBASE, PubMed, Web-of-Science, Scopus, and CINAHL (last performed on August 25, 2020).
(1) Studies reporting clinical outcomes and/or costs of recurrent-IS; (2) Original research published in English in year 2010 or later; (3) Study participants aged ≥18 years.
(1) Case reports/studies, abstracts/posters, Editorial letters/reviews; (2) Studies analyzing interventions other than intravenous thrombolysis and thrombectomy. Four independent reviewers selected studies with review of titles/abstracts and full-text, and performed data extraction. Discrepancies were resolved by a senior independent arbitrator. Risk-of-bias was assessed using the Mixed Methods Appraisal Tool.
Initial search yielded 20,428 studies. Based on inclusion/exclusion criteria, 9 studies were selected, consisting of 24,499 recurrent-IS patients. In 5 studies, recurrent-IS ranged from 4.4-56.8% of the ischemic stroke cohorts at 3 or 12 months, or undefined follow-up. Mean age was 60-80 years and female proportions were 38.5-61.1%. Clinical outcomes included mortality 11.6-25.9% for in-hospital, 30-days, or 4-years (3 studies). In one study from the U.S., mean in-hospital costs were $17,121(SD-$53,693) and 1-year disability costs were $34,639(SD-$76,586) per patient.
Our study highlights the paucity of data on clinical outcomes and costs of recurrent-IS and identifies gaps in existing literature to direct future research.

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