Stroke trends in an aging population

Technology Assessment Methods Project Team

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


Background and Purpose: Trends in stroke incidence and survival determine changes in stroke morbidity and mortality. This study examines the extent of the incidence decline and survival improvement in the Netherlands from 1979 to 1989. In addition, it projects future changes in stroke morbidity during the period 1985 to 2005, when the country’s population will be aging. Methods: A state-event transition model is used, which combines Dutch population projections and existing data on stroke epidemiology. Based on the clinical course of stroke, the model describes historical national age- and sex-specific hospital admission and mortality rates for stroke. It extrapolates observed trends and projects future changes in stroke morbidity rates. Results: There is evidence of a continuing incidence decline. The most plausible rate of change is an annual decline of -1.9% (range, -1.7% to -2.1%) for men and -2.4% (range, -2.3% to -2.8%) for women. Projecting a constant mortality decline, the model shows a 35% decrease of the stroke incidence rate for a period of 20 years. Prevalence rates for major stroke will decline among the younger age groups but increase among the oldest because of increased survival in the latter. In absolute numbers this results in an 18% decrease of acute stroke episodes and an 11% increase of major stroke cases. Conclusions: The increase in survival cannot fully explain the observed mortality decline and, therefore, a concomitant incidence decline has to be assumed. Aging of the population partially outweighs the effect of an incidence decline on the total burden of stroke. Increase in cardiovascular survival leads to a further increase in major stroke prevalence among the oldest age groups.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)931-939
Number of pages9
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1993
Externally publishedYes


  • Aging
  • Epidemiology
  • Morbidity
  • Mortality
  • The Netherlands

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Advanced and Specialized Nursing


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