A report published Action for Stroke Prevention, an alliance of renowned health experts and patient organisations supported by Bayer Healthcare, highlighted the widespread problem of atrial fibrillation (AF) as a cause of stroke. AF, or abnormal heart rhythm, increases stroke risk five-fold compared to the general population. AF-related strokes are more serious than those resulting from other causes. Yet the majority of AF-related strokes are preventable. According to the “How Can We Avoid a Stroke Crisis in Europe?” AF affects 10 million people in Europe alone. The condition is under-diagnosed and undertreated. Despite the overwhelming fear of stroke and its devastating consequences, a new poll by IPSOS MORI shows that 52% of Europeans are unaware of AF, “highlighting a critical educational challenge for policy makers and healthcare providers”, says the report. Action for Stroke Prevention’s Report was launched at the end of October.
is seeking to obtain 1.7 million signatures to support the Charter. This figure was chosen, as it represents the estimated number of people killed or disabled by AF strokes every year. The Charter makes specific recommendations to help put AF and AF-related stroke prevention at the forefront of national health agendas.