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Report Finds Global Increase in Strokes Among Young People

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Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

CBS St. Louis (con't)

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ST. LOUIS (KMOX) - A new report finds strokes are increasing among young people.

Worldwide, stroke is the second-leading cause of death after heart disease. SLU Care neurologist Eli Feen says a new global analysis of the problem finds increasing numbers of stroke victims among younger people between the ages of 20 and 64.

“That was surprising because typically people think of stroke as affecting people who are ‘old,’ meaning people in their late 70s, 80s, and older,” he said. “So this tells us that younger people who are in their prime of life are being increasingly affected by stroke around the world.”

Feen says more young people today are suffering diabetes and high blood pressure. Combine that with growing rates of obesity and smoking worldwide and you can understand why the stroke numbers are rising.

“They are suffering the effects of these diseases,” he added.

Feen says it is critical to be aware of the signs of a possible stroke and seek attention immediately if you have them. They include slurred speech, weakness or numbness on one side of the body, severe headache, and double vision.

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