Every year, 1.3 million Europeans have a stroke and one million ultimately die of stroke. One third of stroke patients remain dependent on the help of others. The annual costs for stroke care in Europe are estimated at € 64.1 billion. Stroke incidence increases almost exponentially with age, and the personal, societal, and economic burden of stroke is therefore largely driven by its frequent occurrence in the elderly. The elderly have been strongly underrepresented in previous stroke trials and treatment guidelines have no recommendations specific to this important group. Elderly patients are at the highest risk of complications after stroke, such as infections, fever, and dysphagia. These complications are strongly and independently associated with a higher risk of death or dependency. The PRECIOUS project seeks to find out whether a pharmacological strategy to prevent these complications can reduce the risk of death or long-term disability.
The PRECIOUS project aims to PREvent Complications to Improve OUtcome in elderly patients with acute Stroke. He new treatment strategy has the potential to lead to an annual reduction of over 25,000 elderly Europeans being dead or dependent as a result of stroke, at very low costs.