WCPT Africa Region Conference System, 9th WCPT Africa Region Congress

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Risk Factors for stroke among stroke patients treated at Ruhengeri Hospital in Rwanda: A four-year document review
Gerard Urimubenshi, Gerard Urimubenshi

Last modified: 2012-02-06



Purpose: To determine the risk factors for stroke among the patients with stroke treated at Ruhengeri Hospital in Rwanda.

Relevance: Strong evidence supports an emerging epidemic of chronic non-communicable diseases including stroke. According to the experience of the researcher, Ruhengeri Hospital in Rwanda receives many stroke patients, and this indicates a significant incidence of stroke in Musanze District served by the Ruhengeri Hospital. Compiling a profile of risk factors for stroke would give data that could be used to develop appropriate prevention and rehabilitation strategies for patients with stroke.

Participants/Subjects: All medical records of stroke patients treated at Ruhengeri Hospital between January 1st, 2005 and December 31st, 2008 were reviewed to collect information related to risk factors for stroke among the stroke patients treated at Ruhengeri Hospital in Rwanda.

Methods: A quantitative retrospective approach was used to collect information regarding the risk factors for stroke among stroke patients treated at Ruhengeri Hospital from 2005 up to 2008. Permission to conduct this study was obtained from the Senate Research Grants and Study Leave Committee at the University of the Western Cape, the National Ethics Committee of Rwanda, the Mayor of Musanze District, and the Director of Ruhengeri Hospital.

Analysis: The SPSS (16.0 version) and the Microsoft Excel Package 2007 were used to analyze the quantitative data. Descriptive statistics using frequencies, percentages, ranges, means, and standard deviations were calculated.

Results: A total of 204 stroke patients were admitted at Ruhengeri Hospital between January 1st, 2005 and December 31st, 2008. From those 204, 65 (31.8%) cases were excluded, and only 139 participants were included for analysis. The mean age of the sample was 56.3 years (SD = 17.265) with ages ranging between 17 and 92 years. Seventy-four participants (53.2%) were females and sixty-five (46.8%) were males. Hypertension was reported in 84 participants (60.4%), followed by smoking and diabetes reported in 20 (14.4) and 14 (10.1%) participants, respectively. Cardiac failure, previous stroke and Transient Ischemic Attack were reported in 13 (9.4%), 11(7.9%), and 9 (6.5%) participants respectively. It was found that 43.1% of the participants were reported to have a combination of at least two risk factors related to stroke.

Conclusion: The modifiable risk factors present in the current study population are concerning as they reveal that the lifestyles of the community could lead to a variety of chronic diseases.

Implications: The current study findings suggest appropriate and specific programmes aiming preventing stroke. Health Policy Makers should develop Health Promotion Programmes to be implemented in public settings such as hospitals, churches, markets and communities in Rwanda and in Musanze District in particular, in order to increase awareness and prevention of the risk factors for stroke.  

Keywords: Stroke, Risk Factor, Ruhengeri Hospital.

Funding Source Acknowledgement: The work was unfunded. We are most grateful to the authorities who gave us the permission to conduct such a study.

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