In a nutshell
This study looked at levels of oxidized low-density lipoprotein (a type of fat cell) as a biomarker to predict recurrent stroke. The authors concluded that high levels of this protein are associated with a higher risk of another stroke in patients with minor stroke and transient ischemic attack (TIA; when blood flow to a part of the brain stops for a short period of time).
Atherosclerosis is a disease where plaque builds up inside the arteries. This can lead to a stroke or a TIA due to blocked blood vessels. Levels of a protein called oxidized low-density lipoprotein (oxLDL) in the blood correlate with plaque build-up. oxLDL levels are also increased in ischemic stroke (blocked artery to the brain). It is possible that high oxLDL levels may help predict the risk of further strokes or TIAs.
Methods & findings
3019 patients who had a minor stroke or TIA were included in this analysis. All patients had oxLDL levels measured. They underwent a follow-up after 90 days then again after 1 year after the event.
Overall, 12.42% of patients had another event until the 1-year follow-up. Patients with the highest levels of oxLDL had a 43% higher risk of another stroke compared to those with the lowest level.
Increased oxLDL levels predicted a 92% higher risk of another stroke within 3 months in patients who were not on statin (drugs to lower cholesterol) medications.
The bottom line
The authors concluded that a higher level of oxLDL was a predicting factor of recurrent stroke in patients who had a minor stroke or TIA.
The fine print
The levels of oxLDL were measured during an acute stroke or TIA. These levels might be different at later times.
Published By :
Aug 08, 2018