(HealthDay News) – Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is independently associated with an increased risk of subsequent ischemic stroke, according to a study published online June 26 in Neurology.

James F. Burke, MD, from the University of Michigan School of Public Health in Ann Arbor, and colleagues used data from California statewide emergency department and inpatient databases (2005–2009) to examine whether TBI is a risk factor for subsequent stroke. The cohort included 1,173,353 trauma patients, of whom 436,630 (37%) had TBI, as defined by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The researchers found that, compared with controls, patients with TBI were slightly younger (mean age, 49.2 vs. 50.3 years); were less likely to be female (46.8% vs. 49.3%); and had a higher mean injury severity score (4.6 vs. 4.1). Over a median follow-up of 28 months, 1.1% of the TBI group and 0.9% of the control group had a subsequent stroke. TBI was independently associated with subsequent ischemic stroke after adjustment for demographics, vascular risk factors, comorbidities, trauma severity, and trauma mechanism (hazard ratio, 1.31).

“In this large cohort, TBI is associated with ischemic stroke, independent of other major predictors,” the authors write.

One author disclosed financial ties to a medical technology company.

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