ObjectiveTo explore the sex differences in outcomes and management after stroke using a large sample with high-quality international trial data.MethodsIndividual participant data were obtained from 5 acute stroke randomized controlled trials. Data were obtained on demographics, medication use, in-hospital treatment, and functional outcome. Study-specific crude and adjusted models were used to estimate sex differences in outcomes and management, and then pooled using random-effects meta-analysis.ResultsThere were 19,652 participants, of whom 7,721 (40%) were women. After multivariable adjustments, women with ischemic stroke had higher survival at 3-6 months (odds ratio [OR] 0.82, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.70-0.97), higher likelihood of disability (OR 1.20, 95% CI 1.06-1.36), and worse quality of life (weighted mean difference -0.07, 95% CI -0.09 to 0.04). For management, women were more likely to be admitted to an acute stroke unit (OR 1.17, 95% CI 1.01-1.34), but less likely to be intubated (OR 0.58, 95% CI 0.36-0.93), treated for fever (OR 0.82, 95% CI 0.70-0.95), or admitted to an intensive care unit (OR 0.83, 95% CI 0.74-0.93). For preadmission medications, women had higher odds of being prescribed antihypertensive agents (OR 1.22, 95% CI 1.13-1.31) and lower odds of being prescribed antiplatelets (OR 0.86, 95% CI 0.79-0.93), glucose-lowering agents (OR 0.86, 95% CI 0.78-0.94), or lipid-lowering agents (OR 0.85, 95% CI 0.77-0.94).ConclusionsThis analysis suggests that women who had ischemic stroke had better survival but were also more disabled and had poorer quality of life. Variations in hospital and out-of-hospital management may partly explain the disparities.
- all clinical trials
- All Cerebrovascular disease/Stroke
- access to care
- quality of life