The objectives of this study were to describe the distribution of serum levels of total homocysteine (HCys) in a sample of older patients consecutively admitted following acute ischemic cerebral stroke, as compared with healthy controls, and to test for possible relationships of HCys levels to some of the prevalent cardiovascular diseases in these stroke patients. One hundred and thirty-seven stroke patients and 132 healthy controls (age ≥60) participated in this study. HCys levels were determined by HPLC method with fluorescence detection. Correlates of HCys levels and clinical data were examined. The results showed that stroke patients (mean age 74.6±9.2) had higher HCys levels as compared with controls (13.8 and 9.8 respectively, p<0.001). Advanced age, male gender, absence of diabetes and a positive history of previous myocardial infarction were the factors associated with HCys levels higher than 10 mmol/L (Odds ratio 2.72, 2.54, 3.12, 3.55, respectively). We conclude that hyperhomocysteinemia is prevalent in older patients with acute ischemic stroke. Few factors associated with increased risk for hyperhomocysteinemia in these stroke patients were identified. The study supports earlier observations regarding elevated HCys levels in stroke patients and increased prevalence of associated cardiovascular disease. (C) 2000, Editrice Kurtis.
- Myocardial infarction