Chronic atrial fibrillation (AF) is associated with a modest but significantly increased risk of ischemic stroke in dialysis patients, data show.

Researchers led by James B. Wetmore, MD, MS, of the University of Kansas School of Medicine in Kansas City studied 56,734 dialysis patients. Chronic AF developed in 5,629 of them. There were 22.8 ischemic strokes and 5.0 hemorrhagic strokes per 1,000 patient-years. Chronic AF was independently associated with a 26% increased risk of ischemic stroke, but not an increased risk of hemorrhagic stroke, the investigators reported in the Annals of Epidemiology (2013;23:112-118).

Additionally, the study showed that African-American and Hispanic race were associated with a significant 46% and 64% increased risk of hemorrhagic stroke, respectively, compared with Caucasian race.

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