- Stroke patients
were found to have a better chance of survival if they had a stable
- Unmarried people had a 71% higher risk of death after stroke while divorced and widowed people
had a 23 to 25% risk of dying after a stroke.
- Divorced or
widowed people who remarried had a 39 to 40% risk of dying after a stroke,
which points towards a stable and continuous marriage as the best factor
for survival after a stroke.
Marriages are one of the oldest institutions but a number of studies have
recently found medical benefits associated with a happy marriage. A study
published in the American Journal of Heart Association
finds a stable
marriage where the couple has never been associated with a divorce or a previously
widowed can survive a stroke better.
Dr. Mathew E. Dupre who is the lead author of the study when asked about
the study stated that this was the first study that delved into the past and
present experiences with marriage and the ability to survive a stroke. The
associate professor at the Department of Community and Family Medicine at Duke
University stated that a good understanding of the risk factors could be used
to identify high-risk patients.
‘Happy marriage could promote survival after a stroke.’
Marital Status and
The effect of a happy marriage on cardiovascular health
been studied well, however, its effect on stroke survival has not been detailed
before. The study on the effect of marital status on stroke survival was based
on data about senior adults from a nationally representative sample collected
as a part of the Health and Retirement Study. The data included over 50 years
of marital information, both prospective and retrospective.
The study included people who survived a stroke between 1992 and 2010,
which included 2,351 respondents who were over the age of 41 years. They
were followed for a period of 5.3 years.
The study found that
study results point towards a possible association between a happy marriage and stroke survival.
- Unmarried men had
a 71% greater risk of dying after stroke when compared with men who were
- Divorced or widowed men were 23 to 25% higher risk
of dying after a stroke when compared to continuously married men.
- Men who were
divorced or widowed more than once were at 39 to 40% risk of dying after
stroke than men who were continuously married.
could be due to sufficient care provided after stroke, which could have aided
in better recovery.
There was no distinction between men and women, neither was there an
association between race and ethnicity. People who remarried had the same risk
as people who were divorced or widowed. The reason for higher fatality due to stroke among people who did
not have a stable marriage could be due to lack of care after stroke.
This may be due to the
absence of children or the lack of family members to aid in
recovery post stroke, highlighting the importance of care and the benefit of
being in a stable marriage.
A stable and happy marriage could also act as a much-needed boost or induce in the patient an eagerness to
survive which could translate to better survival rate. Widowed, divorced or
unmarried men may lack the family support that is essential for better care.
Another aspect could be feelings of depression
A stroke occurs when blood is cut
off from an area of the brain. There are two types of stroke- ischemic stroke
and hemorrhagic stroke. In ischemic stroke, a blood clot blocks the blood vessel and there is
no flow of blood to one part of the brain. While in hemorrhagic stroke, there
is a break in blood vessel resulting in blood leaking into the brain. About
800,000 people are affected by stroke every year and, every 40 seconds someone
suffers a stroke.
The function associated with the region of the brain that is cut off is
lost, like memory or muscle control. Every 4 minutes there is someone who dies of stroke but studies
show that 80% of stroke that occurs could have been prevented.
The risk factors that are associated with stroke include diabetes, hypertension and smoking while the
factors that determine survival after a stroke include the time taken to reach
the hospital, lowering risk factors as well as following treatment guidelines.
The presence of a partner could aid in easy identification of symptoms and
faster hospitalization. Some of the early symptoms include a sudden loss of
sight in one or both the eyes, facial paralysis, inability to lift the arms,
slurring of speech or even headache of unknown cause.
are normally administered for a stroke to dissolve the clot
but post-stroke rehabilitation
which requires a concerted effort by
family members to encourage the patient to become self- reliant holds the key
to surviving a stroke. A stable and strong marriage would provide the right
succor for stroke patients to survive.
- Stroke - (https://medlineplus.gov/stroke.html)
- What is stroke? - (http://www.stroke.org/understand-stroke/what-stroke)