Geisinger Scientists Lead Multinational Study of COVID-19 and Stroke

Data shows low correlation between coronavirus disease (COVID) infection and stroke.

DANVILLE, Pa. – Geisinger scientists led a team of experts from around the world to study the correlation between coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-1)9 infection and stroke risk.

The multinational COVID-19 Stroke Study Group included scientists and clinicians from 99 medical centers in 11 countries. The team was led by Ramin Zand, MD, a vascular neurologist and clinician-scientist at Geisinger, and coordinated by Shima Shahjouei, MD, a postdoctoral stroke fellow at Geisinger.

Some reported symptoms and effects of COVID-19 involve the nervous system, ranging from a loss of smell or taste to more severe and life-threatening conditions such as altered mental state, meningitis, and stroke. The first phase of the study, which included data on 26,175 patients, indicated an overall stroke risk of 0.5% to 1.2% among hospitalized patients with COVID-19 infection. The finding demonstrated that, even though there are increasing reports of patients with COVID-19 experiencing stroke, the overall risk is low.

The study results were published this month in EbioMedicine, a publication of The Lancet.

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