Estimates indicate stroke to be the third leading cause of mortality in Malaysia. With an annual incidence of 40,000 victims, stroke is responsible for taking away at least 11,680 lives each year.
According to the WHO, the number of deaths caused by stroke reached 21,592 people in 2020. Stroke has the highest prevalence among men in their 30s and 40s.
More Facts about Stroke...
The major risk factors for stroke include:
High blood pressure
Heart & blood vessel diseases - conditions causing blood clots or other blockages
High LDL cholesterol levels
Age - Increased risk for babies under 1 and adults with age.
Gender - Men are more likely to suffer a stroke while women have increased risk during pregnancy.
Genetics - If you have family history of stroke, you will be in the high-risk category. People with AB blood type are also at greater risk.
Use the B.E.F.A.S.T formula to check for common stroke symptoms:
Balance - Sudden loss of balance or coordination difficulty
Eyesight - Vision is impaired or changed
Face - Whether one side of the face droops, and if it is still possible to smile
Arms - Both arms raised, and whether one arm drops down instead
Speech - Check for slurred/strange speech
Time - If the answer to any of the above is yes, seek immediate medical assistance. Providing effective treatment within the first 60 minutes, known as the "golden hour", is a key objective.
Treatment Options & Cost
In 2016, the estimated lifetime cost for ischemic and hemorrhagic stroke patients in Malaysia was RM36,400 and RM37,757 respectively.
This figure includes long-term post-stroke outpatient care (e.g. nursing care & rehabilitation), logistics (e.g. mileage & parking), meals, and health aids and equipment. The bulk cost is borne by the patient and their family.
Currently, treatment options include thrombolysis which works by dissolving dangerous clots in blood vessels to prevent damage to tissues and organs, and thrombectomy - a surgery to remove blood clots from inside an artery or vein. 71 hospitals nationwide have thrombolysis service.
Stroke Support Groups in Malaysia
National Stroke Association of Malaysia (NASAM)
Provides rehab services enabling recovery for stroke survivors and promotes stroke prevention by raising public awareness of the risk of stroke. There are currently 9 rehabilitation centres across Petaling Jaya, Ampang, Penang, Ipoh, Malacca, Johor Bharu, Kuantan, Kulim and Kota Kinabalu.
Provides services to maximize recovery, prevent complications and provide assistance towards physical independence in individuals with stroke, spinal cord injuries and Parkinson's disease.