Factors influencing functional outcome of stroke patients admitted to a tertiary hospital
Stroke is a leading cause of death and disability worldwide. Individuals with stroke often face functional limitations. There are several factors that are associated with functional outcome post stroke. Treatment in a stroke unit with a multidisciplinary approach reduces the likelihood of dependency after stroke. The aim of the present study is to identify factors influencing functional outcome of stroke patients admitted to a South African tertiary hospital. A descriptive, observational, longitudinal quantitative study design was used to obtain the data. Convenience non-probability sampling method was used. The research instruments used to collect the data were National Institute of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS), Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS), Barthel Index and a socio-demographic and medical profile data form. All the instruments were used at admission and discharge while at two months only Barthel Index was used for data collection. The data analysis was done using SPSS v 18 and SAS v 9. Mean, standard deviation, range and percentages were used for descriptive purposes and Tobit analysis was used to determine the association between independent and dependent variables. The descriptive results showed that the mean age was 59.83 years with number of females slightly more than males and hypertension being the most common risk factor. The results of the quantitative analysis revealed four factors that influence functional outcome at either discharge or at two months: age, severity of stroke, functional level at admission. Age and severity of stroke influenced the functional outcome at both the stages. The necessary ethical clearance was obtained in prior to commencement of the study. The outcomes of the study could contribute to enhance rehabilitation of stroke patients at an inpatient settings and awareness among population.