The real stroke burden in the Philippines

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Stroke is the Philippines' second leading cause of death. It has a prevalence of 0·9%; ischemic stroke comprises 70% while hemorrhagic stroke comprises 30%. Age-adjusted hypertension prevalence is 20·6%, diabetes 6·0%, dyslipidemia 72·0%, smoking 31%, and obesity 4·9%. The neurologist-to-patient ratio is 1:330·000, with 67% of neurologists practicing in urban centers. Health care is largely private and the cost is borne out-of-pocket by patients and their families. Challenges include delivering adequate support to the rural communities and to the underprivileged sectors.

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