The Importance of Physical Activity in Preventing Recurrent Stroke
When a patient suffers a stroke, their life changes forever. Drug therapy is typically noted as the number one tool in the fight against having another stroke. A recent study is underway lead by Dr. S. Chaturvedi, a professor of Clinical Neurology at the University of Miami. In a recent summary, he points out the importance of exercise in patient recovery and survival.
Exercise is associated with many potential benefits, including lower BP, decreased arterial stiffness, increased high-density lipoprotein levels, decreased insulin resistance, and augmented collateral circulation. This analysis reminds clinicians that increased physical activity is an important “prescription” in the fight against recurrent vascular events. Community or hospital-based exercise programs should be strongly considered for optimal stroke prevention.
He points out that a recent 3 year follow up showed that physical activity was noted as the most important factor in lowering the risk for recurrent stroke.
Doctors need to take the “prescription” of exercise much more seriously. Patients also need to understand the vital importance of increasing their physical activity.
Seemant Chaturvedi, MD, is Professor of Clinical Neurology at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. He is also Vice Chair for Veterans Affairs Programs within the Department of Neurology. Dr. Chaturvedi completed his neurology residency at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center and a stroke fellowship at the University of Western Ontario.
Dr. Chaturvedi has coedited two books, Transient Ischemic Attacks (2004) and Carotid Artery Stenosis (2005). He has been involved with several guideline writing committees for the American Academy of Neurology and American Stroke Association and is on the steering committee of several clinical trials.
This information is taken directly from a recent post in NEJM Journal Watch Neurology from the New England Journal of Medicine.