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News From the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
May 12, 2015

ED Visits for Strokes Decline While Imaging Rates Increase

JAMA. 2015;313(18):1788. doi:10.1001/jama.2015.4251

As mortality rates for stroke have declined, so too have emergency department (ED) visits for ischemic strokes or transient ischemic strokes (TIAs). At the same time, however, more stroke patients in the ED undergo advanced imaging or are transferred to another hospital than are patients with other diagnoses.

Adults’ ED visits for strokes or TIAs have declined by 35%, from 40 visits per 10 000 population in 2001 to 26 per 10 000 in 2011, according to the National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey. The largest decline was among those aged 55 to 74 years—51%, from 68 visits per 10 000 population to 33 visits per 10 000. Adults 75 years or older also made fewer visits to the ED for strokes, a 26% decrease, from 245 visits per 10 000 population to 182 visits per 10 000, but the decline tapered off after 2006 (Talwalkar A and Uddin S. NCHS Data Brief. 2015;[194]:1-7).

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