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Hip Replacement Surgery Raises Stroke Risk | Stroke Foundation

Hip Replacement Surgery Raises Stroke Risk

A New Study Links Hip Replacement Surgery With Higher Stroke Risks

A New Study Links Hip Replacement Surgery With Higher Stroke Risks

A new study which was published in the journal Stroke from the American Heart Association reveals there is a greater chance of a stroke within the following two weeks after total hip replacement surgery. The risk of ischemic stroke rose by 4.7% and hemorrhagic stroke rose by 4.4%.

The lead researcher from the Netherlands stated that this is the first study to link stroke risks in patients who had total hip replacement surgery in comparison to the general public who never had the surgery.

Hospitals have recently started to limit the length of a stay due to better therapy and lower expenses, which provides a good reason to examine stroke risk two weeks after surgery.

Past studies have shown that discharging a patient within 2 to 3 days after the surgery lowers hospital costs and patient satisfaction is higher. Therapy normally starts one day after surgery along with the patient no longer receiving medicine for pain.

An ischemic stroke occurs by a blockage of a artery while a hemorrhagic stroke due to a burst blood vessel which bleeds out on to the brain.

Researchers analyzed the timings of a stroke following total hip replacement surgery in the following periods – in 2 to 6 weeks, 6 to 12 weeks, 3 to 6 months; and 6 to 12 months.

For 12 weeks after surgery the risk of a hemorrhagic stroke was high, while the risk of a ischemic stroke was high for six weeks after the surgery.

The leading researcher stated that there is a reduced risk of stroke after 6 to 12 weeks. After one year, the stroke risk is the same as patients who did not have the surgery.

Total hip replacement surgery is common worldwide. Nearly 1 million of these surgeries are carried out around the world every year.

The researchers found over 66,000 patients in Denmark who had total hip replacement surgery and compared them to close to 200,000 who never had the surgery. The patients were mostly Caucasian, with an average age of 72 years with 63.1% of them being women.

The impact of a number of drugs in lowering stroke risk was also looked at. This revealed that patients who took aspirin had a reduced risk of stroke by nearly 70%, in comparison with those who did not take it. Other drugs which were tested showed little effect.

The research team has plans to extend the analysis of stroke risk after total hip replacement surgery in other populations.