Medicine - Neurology
PeruExternal Bio Page
Establishment of stroke incidence and links to household air pollution
The World Health Organization (WHO) has identified stroke as a high public health priority in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) (1). Stroke prevalence and related risk factors unique to LMICs are not well identified. Household air pollution (HAP) from exposure to biomass fuel smoke is believed to be a highly prevalent risk factor that likely contributes to cerebrovascular disease (2). The WHO has estimated that nearly one quarter of all premature deaths due to stroke (i.e. 1.4 million deaths of which half are in women) can be attributed to the chronic exposure to HAP caused by cooking with biomass fuel (2), however, evidence to support this is lacking. We hypothesize, that through evaluation of stroke prevalence and establishment of a longitudinal registry to study stroke incidence in Puno, Peru, a region with high utilization (>95%) of biomass fuels for cooking in rural settings, we will be able to evaluate the association between stroke risk and exposure to HAP. Further, we hypothesize that the Framingham Stroke Profile (FSP) will predict the increased prevalence and incidence of stroke in this population. The FSP has not been validated in Latin America. We aim to characterize the relationship between HAP and stroke to better describe the epidemiology of this potentially important risk factor in LMICs. We propose a two-year project in which we start with a cross-sectional study to evaluate stroke prevalence in Puno, Peru; and develop a continuous prospective stroke registry to determine the stroke incidence in this population. Laying the foundation for an ongoing research operation will provide the capacity to conduct intervention trials, for example by utilizing improved cookstoves to reduce stroke risk.
Will Checkley, Catherine Hooper, Kiran Thakur, Jaime Miranda