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Journal of the Korean Academy of Rehabilitation Medicine 1999;23(3):485-491.
The Incidence of Secondary Poststroke Complications in Stroke Patients in Korea as Compared with Those in Western Countries.
Ha, Sang Bae , Choi, Kyoung Hyo , Kim, Chul Jun
Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Asan Medical Center, University of Ulsan College of Medicine.
서구와 비교한 한국의 뇌졸중 환자에서의 이차적 합병증의 발생빈도
하상배, 최경효, 김철준
울산대학교 의과대학 서울중앙병원 재활의학과
Abstract

Objective
It has been well known that many of patients with stroke have developed secondary poststroke complications which encompassed pneumonia, urinary tract infection, depression, fall and/or fracture, deep vein thrombosis, decubitus ulcer, and others. Our experience with Korean stroke patients indicated that the incidences of such complications were not as high as reported on the western literatures. This study was aimed to obtain the precise data in terms of occurrence of poststroke complications in Korea as compared with those in western countries.


Method
Nine-hundred-eighty-four (984) charts of Stroke patients who were hospitalized at Asan Medical Center during the periods of 3 years from 1994 through 1997 were reviewed. The data from the review were compared with the data excerpted from the literatures.


Results
The review of charts disclosed that there was a great disparity of the incidences of complications in stroke patients between Korea and Western (U.S.A.) countries. The incidences of all stroke complications were uniformly much lower in Korea than Western countries.


Conclusion
Compared with western countries, stroke patients in Korea presented significantly lower incidences of poststroke complications: 5.8% pneumonia; 3.7% urinary tract infection; 3.0% fall; 2.7% decubitus ulcer; and 2.4% deep vein thrombosis. Although there were a many factors accounting for lower incidences of complication, an extensive nursing service around the clock seemed to be a major attributing factor. However, the nursing services such as position change, massage, joint motion exercise etc. have been rendered not by registered nurse but by a caregiver hired by patient's family or a member of patient's family. Since patient's family or caregiver had not formally received an education of health care, their service may be liable for incidences against patient's quality care. Therefore, the strengthening of the manpower of registered nurse is essential to meet a standard of nursing service.

Key Words: Stroke, Complication, Rehabilitation
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