Patterns in hospital readmissions after ischaemic stroke – An observational study from the Swedish stroke register (Riksstroke)

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Introduction: While acute treatment and secondary prevention in stroke have undergone major improvements, hospital readmission after index stroke remains high. However, there are few reports on long-term readmission patterns. Patients and methods: For this prospective observational study, data on demographics, functional status and living conditions were obtained from the Swedish Stroke Register (Riksstroke). Data on comorbidity and hospital readmissions up to five years post-index stroke were obtained from the Swedish National Patient Register. Patients were grouped based on number of readmissions: low (0–1) intermediate (2–4), high (5–9) or very high (≥10). Results: Of the 10,092 patients included, 43.7% had been readmitted within 12 months and 74.0% within 5 years. There was an average of three readmissions per individual during the five-year interval. A small group of patients with a high-comorbidity burden accounted for the majority of readmissions: approximately 20% of patients accounted for 60% of readmissions, and 5% of patients accounted for 25%. Circulatory conditions were the most common cause followed by infectious disease, stroke, trauma and diseases of the nervous system other than stroke. The proportion of readmissions due to stroke decreased sharply in the first six months. Conclusion: A small number of patients with a high degree of comorbidity accounted for the majority of hospital readmissions after index stroke. Our results highlight the need for further development of strategies to support high-risk comorbid stroke patients in the community setting. Further research describing characteristics and healthcare utilisation patterns in this group is warranted.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)286-296
Number of pages11
JournalEuropean Stroke Journal
Issue number3
Early online date2020
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Sept 1

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Neurology

Free keywords

  • comorbidity
  • Ischaemic stroke
  • readmission


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