Stroke rates for Young Canadians on the rise

The recent release of the Heart and Stroke Report 2017 reveals an eleven percent increase of the number of stroke patients between the ages of 20 and 59 years old. Younger individuals who experience a stroke may not be getting the rehab services they need as most services are geared towards elderly patients. Health systems, communities and families play a important role in supporting of stroke patients.

Read the full article here.

Stroke and Dementia


One in three Canadians will develop stroke, dementia or both and having a stroke doubles your risk of developing dementia. Although this risk increases with age, a stroke can increase dementia risk at any age, even as early as 40s or 50s.

However, prevention goes a long way. Controlling risk factors common to both stroke and dementia like high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes and physical inactivity can significantly reduce your risk.

Read more about stroke risk factors and assessing your risk and Heart & Stroke.

Read more about stroke and dementia here.



The Heart & Stroke Foundation 2017 Stroke Report reveals gaps in the recovery and support services for Canadians who experience stroke. Many individuals who experienced stroke need assistance with their daily activities such as eating, bathing and dressing. However, “hidden” deficits such as depression and memory difficulties also significantly impact the lives of these individuals. These issues are not well understand and overall needs of stroke survivors are not being met.

Read the full report here.



Stroke in young adults cover

For the first time in Canada, a resource guide has been developed for young adult stroke survivors and their families. Created by the Heart and Stroke Foundation, the Canadian Partnership for Stroke Recovery and UTSP, this guide provides help with topics such as pain, changing relationships and returning to work.

While strokes are relatively uncommon in young adults, they have experienced a rise in incidence in the last decade. Stroke rates in young adults are predicted to double in the next 15 years.

The full report can be read below, and can also be found in our website’s ‘Patient Education’ section.

Stroke In Young Adults Report


Medical residentsIn a new study conducted by St. Michael’s Dr. Gustavo Saposnik, stroke patients admitted to hospital in the month of July had similar outcomes to patients admitted in other months of the year. These findings relieve concerns about the ‘July Effect’, in which quality of care may be decreased due to the introduction of medical students into residency during the month of July.

Stroke outcomes such as mortality, hospital readmission and long term disability were not affected by the ‘July Effect’. The multidisciplinary nature of stroke treatment is thought to alleviate the effects of inexperienced medical residents providing care.

“More research is needed to understand the possible impact of less-experienced care during the initial moments of stroke management to be sure no July effect is at play at any point of stroke care,” said Dr. Saposnik.

Read the full article here.

Stroke Survivors Remain At Risk

Patients who survive the initial 90-day period after a TIA or stroke remain at high risk of negative outcomes.

Few clinics follow patients for years, but even stable patients may be at high risk. Negative outcomes include a repeat TIA or stroke, a heart attack, admittance to long-term care, or death. Within one year, approximately 10% of patients studied had one of these negative outcomes. The rate increases by 5% with each additional years, up to five years. The study involved 24,000 patients who didn’t have an event within the first 90 days.

The new research was presented by Dr. Rick Swartz at the 2014 Canadian Stroke Congress held in Vancouver, BC.

You can learn more from Heart&Stroke, at:

Too many stroke patients miss window to regain crucial functions

An article from focuses on Stroke Patients who are not getting the rehab necessary to help them return having active and healthy lives. It seems that health care systems are making decisions based on what services are available in the hospital for helping patients rather than providing patients with what they actually need.

“A majority of people who have a stroke report that they need some amount of help afterwards and 80 per cent experience restrictions to their daily activities..”


Stroke Assessment and Treatment Team at St. Michael’s Hospital wins award

In June 2013, the Health Disciplines Professional Practice and Education Recognition Event was held at St. Michael’s Hospital. The Stroke Assessment and Treatment Team (SATT) was recognized and awarded the Interprofessional Collaboration Award. This award is given to a team that makes an outstanding contribution towards patient care. The SATT team is an interprofessional team consisting of neurologists, clinical nurse specialists, dietitians, an occupational therapist, a physiotherapist, a speech-language pathologist, and a discharge planner.

LR stroke team-0353

Stroke Month

Photo May 31, 2 17 41 PMJune is Stroke Month! Stroke Month is an exciting month dedicated to stroke education, treatment, and recovery initiatives. Stroke month will commence on June 1, 2013, and continue through the month of June. Institutions of the UTSP- Sunnybrook, St. Michael’s Hospital, and Toronto Western Hospital- will promote stroke awareness and post-stroke management with their own unique focus.

Click here to find out more information about events at Sunnybrook, St. Michael’s Hospital, and Toronto Western Hospital.

Click here to see pictures of the various events at Stroke Month.

Heart rhythm disturbance may explain many strokes | CTV News

At the International Stroke Conference 2013 in Hawaii, lead investigator Dr. David Gladstone presented new research findings that might explain the causes of stroke in individuals with no pre-determined risk factors (1).

Irregular heart rhythm (or atrial fibrillation) is known to be a risk factor of strokes, but detection through heart monitoring can lead to treatment and stroke intervention (1). However, heart monitoring normally occurs over a period of one to two days and irregular heart rhythm may occur outside this window of monitoring.

Dr. Gladstone and his team of researchers have just completed a three year clinical trial, involving 572 patients that wore a non-intrusive 30-day heart monitor. This study allowed the research team to monitor patients that tested negative for atrial fibrillation in regular monitoring and found that one in six individuals with unexplained transient ischemic attack or stroke, could be attributed to atrial fibrillation (2).

Dr. Gladstone, UTSP doctor, University of Toronto associate professor and director of the Regional Stroke Prevention Clinic of Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre speaks on the study:

“The hope is that earlier detection and treatment of atrial fibrillation may lead to more strokes prevented and more lives saved,” said Dr. Gladstone (2).

Get the full news article here: Heart rhythm disturbance may explain many strokes | CTV News.

1. Study finds clue to unexplained strokes. (2013, 02 07). Retrieved from

2. Taylor , P. (2013, 02 07). A new tool in the battle to prevent strokes. Globe & Mail. Retrieved from