Long-term outcomes for Medicare beneficiaries hospitalised with transient ischaemic attack (TIA) and role of ABCD score in identifying high-risk individuals are not studied.
We identified 40 825 Medicare beneficiaries hospitalised from 2011 to 2014 for a TIA to a Get With The Guidelines (GWTG)-Stroke hospital and classified them using ABCD score. Proportional hazards models were used to assess 1-year event rates of mortality and rehospitalisation (all-cause, ischaemic stroke, haemorrhagic stroke, myocardial infarction, and gastrointestinal and intracranial haemorrhage) for high-risk versus low-risk groups adjusted for patient and hospital characteristics.
Of the 40 825 patients, 35 118 (86%) were high risk (ABCD ≥4) and 5707 (14%) were low risk (ABCD=0-3). Overall rate of mortality during 1-year follow-up after hospital discharge for the index TIA was 11.7%, 44.3% were rehospitalised for any reason and 3.6% were readmitted due to stroke. Patients with ABCD score ≥4 had higher mortality at 1 year than not (adjusted HR 1.18, 95% CI 1.07 to 1.30). Adjusted risks for ischaemic stroke, all-cause readmission and mortality/all-cause readmission at 1 year were also significantly higher for patients with ABCD score ≥4 vs 0-3. In contrast, haemorrhagic stroke, myocardial infarction, gastrointestinal bleeding and intracranial haemorrhage risk were not significantly different by ABCD score.
This study validates the use of ABCD score for long-term risk assessment after TIA in patients aged 65 years and older. Attentive efforts for community-based follow-up care after TIA are needed for ongoing prevention in Medicare beneficiaries who were hospitalised for TIA.

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