World Stroke Day is celebrated on October 29, every year to raise awareness on the serious nature and high rates of stroke and talk about ways in which we can reduce the burden of stroke through better public awareness of the risk factors and signs of stroke.
World Stroke Day Significance
The global awareness day was established by World Stroke Organization (WSO) and provides a global platform for the stroke community to increase awareness and drive action on stroke around the world.
World Stroke Day is also an opportunity to advocate for action by decision makers at global, regional and national levels that are essential to improve stroke prevention, access to acute treatment and support for survivors and caregivers.
World Stroke Day 2021 Theme
‘Minutes can save lives’
World Stroke Day on October 29th 2021 will focus on improving awareness of stroke symptoms with an emotional campaign that aims to highlight what can be saved if we all know the signs of stroke and call for an ambulance immediately.
When it comes to stroke, every minute matters. With the global lifetime risk of stroke standing at 1 in 4, it is clear that wide public awareness of symptoms is critical to the effort to save 5.5 million lives and improve outcomes for the 9 million people who survive stroke each year.
World Stroke Day History
The annual event was started in 2006 by the World Stroke Organization (WSO) and the WSO declared stroke a public health emergency in 2010. WSO World Stroke Day on October 29 was established in 2004 at the World Stroke Congress in Vancouver, Canada. Under the direction of Dr. Vladimir Hachinski, a working group was formed, which was incorporated into a World Stroke Proclamation in October 2006. Around the same time, the International Stroke Society and the World Stroke Federation merged to form the World Stroke Organization, which took over the management of World Stroke Day.
Learn about stroke
Stroke happens when the blood supply to part of the brain is cut off. Without blood, brain cells can be damaged or die.
The impact of stroke can be short- and long-term, depending on which part of the brain is affected and how quickly it is treated. Stroke survivors can experience wide-ranging disabilities including difficulties with mobility and speech, as well as how they think and feel.
Facts and Figures about Stroke
- Stroke is a condition where the blood supply to the brain is disrupted, resulting in oxygen starvation, brain damage and loss of function. It is most frequently caused by a clot in an artery supplying blood to the brain, a situation known as ischemia. It can also be caused by hemorrhage when a burst vessel causes blood to leak into the brain. Stroke can cause permanent damage, including partial paralysis and impairment in speech, comprehension and memory. The extent and location of the damage determines the severity of the stroke, which can range from minimal to catastrophic.
- Stroke has already reached epidemic proportions. Globally 1 in 4 adults over the age of 25 will have a stroke in their lifetime. 13.7 million people worldwide will have their first stroke this year and five and a half million will die as a result. Current trends suggest that the number of annual deaths will climb to 6.7 million annually without appropriate action.
- Stroe is leading cause of death and disability globally with 116m years of healthy life lost each year to the disease.
- Stroke disproportionately affects individuals living in resource-poor countries. From 2000 to 2008, the overall stroke incidence rates in low- to middle-income countries exceeded that of incidence rates seen in high-income countries by 20%. Today, two out of every three people who suffer from a stroke live in low- and middle-income countries.
- One of the main disease processes leading to stroke is atherosclerosis. The incidence of stroke increases significantly with age. There are many other risk factors, including tobacco use, physical inactivity, unhealthy diet, harmful use of alcohol, hypertension, atrial fibrillation, raised blood lipid levels, obesity, male gender, genetic disposition and psychological factors.