Scoping Review of Racial, Ethnic, and Sex Disparities in the Diagnosis and Management of Hemorrhagic Stroke

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BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: In the United States, Black, Hispanic, and Asian Americans suffer from excessively high incidence rates of hemorrhagic stroke compared to White Americans. Women suffer from higher rates of subarachnoid hemorrhage than men. Previous reviews detailing racial, ethnic, and sex disparities in stroke have focused on ischemic stroke. We performed a scoping review of disparities in the diagnosis and management of hemorrhagic stroke in the United States to identify areas of disparities, research gaps, and evidence to inform efforts aimed at health equity.

METHODS: We included studies published after 2010 that assessed racial and ethnic or sex disparities in the diagnosis or management of patients 18 years or older in the United States with a primary diagnosis of spontaneous intracerebral hemorrhage or aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage. We did not include studies assessing disparities in incidence, risks, or mortality and functional outcomes of hemorrhagic stroke.

RESULTS: After reviewing 6161 abstracts and 441 full texts, 59 studies met our inclusion criteria. Four themes emerged. First, few data address disparities in acute hemorrhagic stroke. Second, racial and ethnic disparities in blood pressure control following intracerebral hemorrhage exist and likely contribute to disparities in recurrence rates. Third, racial and ethnic differences in end-of-life-care exist, but further work is required to understand whether these differences represent true disparities in care. Fourth, very few studies specifically address sex disparities in hemorrhagic stroke care.

DISCUSSION: Further efforts are necessary to delineate and correct racial, ethnic, and sex disparities in the diagnosis and management of hemorrhagic stroke.

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ePub ahead of print