The average age for having a stroke in England has reduced in both males and females, according to new figures from Public Health England.
Stroke is the third most common cause of premature death, with nearly 32,000 stroke-related deaths in England each year. It’s also one of the leading causes of disability in the UK.
What does the research say?
The majority of strokes occur in the older generation (59%); however, recent Public Health England figures have found that over a third of first time strokes (38%) happen in middle-aged adults between the ages of 40-69.
Now, more first-time strokes are occurring at an earlier age compared to a decade ago. For males the average age of having a stroke fell from 71 to 68 years, while for females it dropped from 75 to 73 years between 2007 and 2016.
Professor Julia Verne, Public Health England director, said: “Stroke is still one of the leading causes of death in England. While it’s often associated with older people, the latest research shows that people are having strokes at a younger age. Everyone needs to be aware of the signs.”
“Stroke can hit at any age”
The Act FAST campaign has been widely advertised in the UK and has been a helpful tool in spotting the early warning signs of a stroke.
Steve Brine MP, parliamentary under-secretary of state for public health and primary care, said: “Strokes still claim thousands of lives each year, so the message of this Act FAST campaign remains as relevant as ever.
“The faster you act, the greater the chance of a good recovery. That’s why I’m urging everybody – and we must remember stroke can hit at any age – to familiarise themselves with the signs of a stroke and be ready to act fast.”
What is the Act FAST campaign?
The Act FAST campaign is the simplest way to detect the various stages of a stroke. The steps include:
- Face – Has it fallen on one side?
- Arms – Can they raise them?
- Speech – Is it slurred? and
- Time – If you notice any of these signs make the call.