Stroke prevails as a common and devastating disease. Epidemiological studies have advanced our understanding of stroke risk factors and clinical trials have demonstrated effective interventions to decrease stroke risk by modifying risk factors. Stroke risk factors are classified as traditional and novel and may be further divided into modifiable and non-modifiable. In this review we discuss select traditional risk factors for ischemic stroke, interventions for primary and secondary prevention and areas of research progress. Stroke treatment should be comprehensive, involving patient, community and medical personnel education, evaluation of individual risk factors and overall stroke risk assessment. Ongoing research is exploring further interventions in the management of traditional risk factors. Future research will expand our knowledge about the contribution of genetic factors to stroke, their interaction with environmental factors and open exciting avenues for the development of new therapies.
Keywords: Framingham Stroke Risk Profile, Atrial fibrillation, Hypertension, diabetes, Hyperlipidemia, obesity
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