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The systemic complications of stroke can be separated into:

  • endocrine abnormalities:
    • hyperglycaemia in 28% of cases. A stress response.
    • inappropriate antidiuretic hormone secretion in 10%

  • hypertension - can develop in the absence of herniation. Will worsen a pre-existing hypertensive state or initiate hypertension. Present in 84% of cases.

  • fever - a direct result of stroke or more usually, a result of other complication, e.g. pulmonary or urinary infection, deep vein thrombosis. Occurs in 44% of cases.

  • deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism - occurs in over half of all cases.

  • pressure sores - especially in the unconscious patient

  • dysphagia

  • painful limbs - post-stroke thalamic pain

  • frozen shoulder

Last reviewed 01/2018