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Randomized controlled trial of a comprehensive stroke education program for patients and caregivers

Lookup NU author(s): Emerita Professor Helen Rodgers


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Background and Purpose-We report the findings of a randomized controlled trial to determine the effectiveness of a multidisciplinary Stroke Education Program (SEP) for patients and their informal carers. Methods-Two hundred four patients admitted with acute stroke and their 176 informal carers were randomized to receive an invitation to the SEP or to receive conventional stroke unit care, The SEP consisted of one 1-hour small group educational session for inpatients followed by six 1-hour sessions after discharge. The primary outcome measure was patient- and carer-perceived health status (SF-36) at 6 months after stroke. Knowledge of stroke, satisfaction with services, emotional outcome, disability, and handicap and were secondary outcome measures, Results-Only 51 of 108 (47%) surviving patients randomized to the SEP completed the program, as did 20 of 93 (22%) informal carers of surviving patients. Perceived health status (Short Form 36 [SF-36] health survey) scores were similar for SEP patients and controls. Informal carers in the control group scored better on the social functioning component of the SF-36 than the SEP group (P=0.04), Patients and informal carers in the SEP group scored higher on the stroke knowledge scale than controls (patients, P=0.02; carers, P=0.01). Patients in the SEP group were more satisfied with the information that they had received about stroke (P=0.004), There were no differences in emotional or functional outcomes between groups, Conclusions-Although the SEP improved patient and informal carer knowledge about stroke and patient satisfaction with some components of stroke services, this was not associated with an improvement in their perceived health status, Indeed, the social functioning of informal carers randomized to the SEP was less than in the control group.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Rodgers H; Atkinson C; Bond S; Suddes M; Dobson R; Curless R

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Stroke

Year: 1999

Volume: 30

Issue: 12

Pages: 2585-2591

Print publication date: 01/12/1999

ISSN (print): 0039-2499

ISSN (electronic): 1524-4628

Publisher: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins


DOI: 10.1161/01.STR.30.12.2585


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