Publications by authors named "Reginald Obiako"

41 Publications

A Novel Afrocentric Stroke Risk Assessment Score: Models from the Siren Study.

J Stroke Cerebrovasc Dis 2021 Jul 28;30(10):106003. Epub 2021 Jul 28.

Medical University of South Carolina, SC, USA.

Background: Stroke risk can be quantified using risk factors whose effect sizes vary by geography and race. No stroke risk assessment tool exists to estimate aggregate stroke risk for indigenous African.

Objectives: To develop Afrocentric risk-scoring models for stroke occurrence.

Materials And Methods: We evaluated 3533 radiologically confirmed West African stroke cases paired 1:1 with age-, and sex-matched stroke-free controls in the SIREN study. The 7,066 subjects were randomly split into a training and testing set at the ratio of 85:15. Conditional logistic regression models were constructed by including 17 putative factors linked to stroke occurrence using the training set. Significant risk factors were assigned constant and standardized statistical weights based on regression coefficients (β) to develop an additive risk scoring system on a scale of 0-100%. Using the testing set, Receiver Operating Characteristics (ROC) curves were constructed to obtain a total score to serve as cut-off to discriminate between cases and controls. We calculated sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value (PPV) and negative predictive value (NPV) at this cut-off.

Results: For stroke occurrence, we identified 15 traditional vascular factors. Cohen's kappa for validity was maximal at a total risk score of 56% using both statistical weighting approaches to risk quantification and in both datasets. The risk score had a predictive accuracy of 76% (95%CI: 74-79%), sensitivity of 80.3%, specificity of 63.0%, PPV of 68.5% and NPV of 76.2% in the test dataset. For ischemic strokes, 12 risk factors had predictive accuracy of 78% (95%CI: 74-81%). For hemorrhagic strokes, 7 factors had a predictive accuracy of 79% (95%CI: 73-84%).

Conclusions: The SIREN models quantify aggregate stroke risk in indigenous West Africans with good accuracy. Prospective studies are needed to validate this instrument for stroke prevention.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jstrokecerebrovasdis.2021.106003DOI Listing
July 2021

Influence of age on links between major modifiable risk factors and stroke occurrence in West Africa.

J Neurol Sci 2021 Jul 9;428:117573. Epub 2021 Jul 9.

College of Medicine, University of Ibadan, Nigeria. Electronic address:

Background The burden of stroke in Africa is high. Understanding how age associates with major modifiable stroke risk factors could inform tailored demographic stroke prevention strategies. Purpose To quantify the magnitude and direction of the effect sizes of key modifiable stroke risk factors according to three age groups: <50 years (young), 50-65 years (middle age) and > 65 years (elderly) in West Africa. Methods This was a case-control study involving 15 sites in Ghana and Nigeria. Cases included adults aged ≥18 years with CT/MRI scan-typed stroke. Controls were age-and gender-matched stroke-free adults. Detailed evaluations for vascular, lifestyle and psychosocial factors were performed. We estimated adjusted odds ratios (aOR) using conditional logistic regression and population attributable risk (PAR) with 95% Confidence Interval of vascular risk factors by age groups. Results Among 3553 stroke cases, 813 (22.9%) were young, 1441 (40.6%) were middle-aged and 1299 (36.6%) were elderly. Among the 5 co-shared risk factors, dyslipidemia with PAR and aOR (95%CI) of 62.20% (52.82-71.58) and 4.13 (2.64-6.46) was highest among the young age group; hypertension with PAR of 94.31% (91.82-96.80) and aOR of 28.93 (15.10-55.44) was highest among the middle-age group. Diabetes with PAR of 32.29%(27.52-37.05) and aOR of 3.49 (2.56-4.75); meat consumption with PAR of 42.34%(32.33-52.35) and aOR of 2.40 (1.76, 3.26); and non-consumption of green vegetables, PAR of 16.81%(12.02-21.60) and aOR of 2.23 (1.60-3.12) were highest among the elderly age group. However confidence intervals of risk estimates overlapped across age groups. Additionally, among the young age group cigarette smoking, psychosocial stress and cardiac disease were independently associated with stroke. Furthermore, education, stress, physical inactivity and salt intake were associated with stroke in the middle-age group while cardiac disease was associated with stroke in the elderly age group. Conclusion There is a differential influence of age on the associations of major risk factors with stroke in this West African cohort. Targeting modifiable factors predominant within an age group may be more effective as a stroke prevention strategy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jns.2021.117573DOI Listing
July 2021

Frequency and factors associated with post-stroke seizures in a large multicenter study in West Africa.

J Neurol Sci 2021 Aug 9;427:117535. Epub 2021 Jun 9.

Federal Medical Centre, Abeokuta, Nigeria; Center for Genomic and Precision Medicine, College of Medicine, University of Ibadan, Nigeria.

Background: Post-stroke seizures (PSS) are associated with significant morbidity and mortality across the globe. There is a paucity of data on PSS in Africa.

Purpose: To assess the frequency and factors associated with PSS by stroke types across 15 hospitals in Nigeria and Ghana.

Methods: We analyzed data on all stroke cases recruited into the Stroke Investigative Research and Educational Network (SIREN). We included adults aged ≥18 years with radiologically confirmed ischemic stroke (IS) or intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH). PSS were defined as acute symptomatic seizures occurring at stroke onset and/or during acute hospitalization up until discharge. We used logistic regression to estimate adjusted odds ratios (aOR) with 95% Confidence Interval.

Results: Among 3344 stroke patients, 499 (14.9%) had PSS (95% CI: 13.7-16.2%). The mean duration of admission in days for those with PSS vs no PSS was 17.4 ± 28.6 vs 15.9 ± 24.7, p = 0.72. There were 294(14.1%) PSS among 2091 ischemic strokes and 159(17.7%) among 897 with ICH, p = 0.01. The factors associated with PSS occurrence were age < 50 years, aOR of 1.59 (1.08-2.33), National Institute of Health Stroke Score (NIHSS), 1.29 (1.16-1.42) for each 5 units rise and white cell count 1.07 (1.01-1.13) for each 10^3 mm rise. Factors associated with PSS in ischemic were NIHSS score, aOR of 1.17 (1.04-1.31) and infarct volume of 10-30 cm aOR of 2.17(1.37-3.45). Among ICH, associated factors were alcohol use 5.91 (2.11-16.55) and lobar bleeds 2.22 (1.03-4.82).

Conclusion: The burden of PSS among this sample of west Africans is substantial and may contribute to poor outcomes of stroke in this region. Further longitudinal studies are required to understand the impact on morbidity and mortality arising from PSS in Africa.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jns.2021.117535DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8325635PMC
August 2021

Factors associated with hypertension among stroke-free indigenous Africans: Findings from the SIREN study.

J Clin Hypertens (Greenwich) 2021 04 23;23(4):773-784. Epub 2021 Jan 23.

Center for Genomic and Precision Medicine, College of Medicine, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria.

Hypertension is one of the most important risk factors for stroke and cardiovascular diseases (CVD) globally. Understanding risk factors for hypertension among individuals with matching characteristics with stroke patients may inform primordial/primary prevention of hypertension and stroke among them. This study identified the risk factors for hypertension among community-dwelling stroke-free population in Ghana and Nigeria. Data for 4267 community-dwelling stroke-free controls subjects in the Stroke Investigative Research and Education Network (SIREN) study in Nigeria and Ghana were used. Participants were comprehensively assessed for sociodemographic, lifestyle and metabolic factors using standard methods. Hypertension was defined as a previous diagnosis by a health professional or use of an anti-hypertensive drug or mean systolic blood pressure ≥ 140 mmHg and/or diastolic blood pressure ≥ 90 mmHg. Logistic regression analysis was used to estimate adjusted odds ratios (aOR) of hypertension and their 95% confidence intervals (CI) at p < .05. Overall, 56.7% of the participants were hypertensive with a higher proportion among respondents aged ≥60 years (53.0%). Factors including physical inactivity (aOR: 9.09; 95% CI: 4.03 to 20.53, p < .0001), diabetes (aOR: 2.70; CI: 1.91 to 3.82, p < .0001), being ≥60 years (aOR: 2.22; 95% CI: 1.78 to 2.77, p < .0001), and family history of CVD (aOR 2.02; CI: 1.59 to 2.56, p < .0001) were associated with increased aOR of hypertension. Lifestyle factors were associated with hypertension in the current population of community-dwelling stroke-free controls in west Africa. Community-oriented interventions to address sedentary lifestyles may benefit this population and reduce/prevent hypertension and stroke among them.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jch.14183DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8263562PMC
April 2021

Antecedent febrile illness and occurrence of stroke in West Africa: The SIREN study.

J Neurol Sci 2020 Nov 28;418:117158. Epub 2020 Sep 28.

Department of Medicine, University of Ibadan, Nigeria.

Background: Acute infections have been posited as potential precipitants or triggers of the occurrence of stroke among adults with traditional vascular risk factors. We evaluated associations between stroke occurrence and reported febrile illness within 4 weeks (potential antecedent infections) among West Africans.

Methods: The Stroke Investigative Research and Educational Network (SIREN) is a multicenter, case-control study involving 15 sites in Ghana and Nigeria. Cases include adults aged ≥18 years with radiologically confirmed strokes. Controls were stroke-free adults matched with cased by age, gender and ethnicity. Detailed evaluations for vascular, lifestyle and psychosocial factors were performed. Participants were asked for evidence of any febrile illness within the past 4 weeks. We used conditional logistic regression to estimate adjusted odds ratios (aOR) with 95% Confidence Interval.

Results: Among 3588 stroke cases recruited in Ghana and Nigeria between August 2014 and July 2018, 363 cases (10.1%) reported having a febrile illness within the 4 weeks prior to stroke occurrence. Having an antecedent infection was associated with stroke occurrence with an unadjusted OR of 1.19 (1.00-1.51) but aOR of 0.83 (0.59-1.17) upon adjusting for traditional vascular risk factors. Stress, aOR of 4.69 (2.59-8.50) and consumption of green vegetables 2.27 (1.35-2.85) were associated with antecedent febrile illness.

Conclusion: 1 in 10 stroke cases reported antecedent history of febrile illness prior to occurrence of stroke but no independent association was observed in this study. Infectious exposures may be important triggers of cardiovascular events requiring further exploratory studies to better understand the role of this emerging risk factor.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jns.2020.117158DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8006213PMC
November 2020

Addressing antimicrobial resistance in Nigerian hospitals: exploring physicians prescribing behavior, knowledge, and perception of antimicrobial resistance and stewardship programs.

Expert Rev Anti Infect Ther 2021 Apr 2;19(4):537-546. Epub 2020 Nov 2.

Department of Pharmacy, Faculty of Health Sciences, School of Health Care Sciences, Sefako Makgatho Health Sciences University, Pretoria, South Africa.

Introduction: We assessed the knowledge of, attitude toward antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and practice of antimicrobial stewardship (AMS) among physicians in Nigeria to provide future guidance to the Nigerian National Action Plan for AMR.

Methods: A descriptive cross-sectional questionnaire-based study explored the physicians' self-reported practice of antibiotic prescribing, knowledge, attitude, and practice of AMR and components of ASPs.

Results: The majority (217; 67.2%) of respondents prescribed antibiotics daily in their clinical practice AMR was recognized as a global and local problem by 308 (95.4%) and 262 (81.1%) respondents, respectively. Only 91 (28.2%) of respondents have ever heard of antibiotic stewardship. The median AMR knowledge score was 40 (19-45)out of 45while that for ASP was 46.0(32-57) out of 60. There was significant statistical difference between the ASP median scores among the medical specialties category (P value <0.0001) More respondents had good knowledge of AMR than ASPs (82.7% versus 36.5%; p < 0.0001).

Conclusion: Respondents in this study were more knowledgeable about AMR than AMS and its core components.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14787210.2021.1829474DOI Listing
April 2021

Psychometric validity of the distress thermometer and problem check list in ART-naïve HIV infected patients in Northern Nigeria.

Afr Health Sci 2019 Dec;19(4):3172-3180

Department of Psychiatry, Ahmadu Bello University Zaria.

Background: HIV diagnosis comes with a lot of worry and distress. Ability to objectively estimate this distress by non-psychiatrist will enhance early detection of psychological distress for intervention.

Objectives: To investigate the validity of the Distress Thermometer (DT) and its problem checklist in achieving early detection of mental distress among ART-naïve HIV infected patient.

Materials And Methods: A total of 90 ART-naïve HIV infected patients completed the DT and its problem check list, Hospital Anxiety Depression Scale (HADS), Oslo Social Support Scale and the 14-item Resilience Scale.

Results: The DT was positively correlated with all the measures of distress and reversely correlated with all the positive wellness in this study. The correlations were only significant for the negative measures of psychological wellness. The internal consistency of the DT's problem list overall and sub-categories were within acceptable range (i.e. α > 0.50). The Receiver Operating Characteristic (ROC) curves and Area Under the Curves (AUC) analysis were significant and found the DT and Problem List to respectively differentiate between cases of distress, anxiety and depression. The DT's cut-off was >5.0 with AUC range (0.754 - 0.709); sensitivity range (81.0% - 70.4%); specificity range (68.3% - 65.2%) for distress, anxiety and depression as determined by HADS. And the Problem List cut-off was >6.0 with AUC range (0.854 - 0.821); sensitivity range (90.5% - 85.7%); specificity range (68.3% - 65.2%) for distress, anxiety and depression as measured by HADS.

Conclusion: The DT and Problem List were found to be valid measures of distress in ART-naïve HIV infected patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4314/ahs.v19i4.40DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7040331PMC
December 2019

Unraveling the risk factors for spontaneous intracerebral hemorrhage among West Africans.

Neurology 2020 03 19;94(10):e998-e1012. Epub 2020 Feb 19.

From Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (F.S.S., L.A., A. Singh, D.O.), Kumasi, Ghana; University of California (B.O.), San Francisco; Medical University of South Carolina (M.G., D.L., C.J., F.M.), Charleston; College of Medicine (O. Akpa, G. Ogbole, M.O., J.A., A.O., A. Adeoye, L. Ogunjimi, O. Arulogun, F.A., O. Ogah, A. Makanjuola, O. Adebayo, A. Agunloye, S.L., S.D., M.F., C.E.), University of Ibadan, Nigeria; University of Ghana Medical School (A. Akpalu, R.L., B.C.-T.), Accra; University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital (K.W., L. Oyinloye, P.K., E.S.); Federal Medical Centre (R.A., O. Adeleye), Abeokuta; Ahmadu Bello University (R.O., O.B., V.S., H.I.), Zaria; Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospital (M.K., B.F., O. Ajose, S.O.), Ile-Ife; Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital (L. Owolabi, A. Mande), Kano, Nigeria; University of Kentucky (D.A.), Lexington; University of Alabama at Birmingham (H.T.); University of Cambridge (H.S.M.), UK; Delta State University Teaching Hospital (O. Olugbo); Jos Teaching Hospital (G. Osaigbovo, A. Salaam, G.A., C.I.), Plateau State; Federal Medical Centre (I.C.), Umuahia, Abia State; Federal Medical Centre (T.S.), Owo, Ondo State; and Ladoke Akintola University of Technology Teaching Hospital (A. Akintunde), Ogbomosho, Oyo State, Nigeria.

Objective: To characterize risk factors for spontaneous intracerebral hemorrhage (sICH) occurrence and severity among West Africans.

Methods: The Stroke Investigative Research and Educational Network (SIREN) study is a multicenter case-control study involving 15 sites in Ghana and Nigeria. Patients were adults ≥18 years old with CT-confirmed sICH with age-, sex-, and ethnicity-matched stroke-free community controls. Standard instruments were used to assess vascular, lifestyle, and psychosocial factors. Factors associated with sICH and its severity were assessed using conditional logistic regression to estimate odds ratios (ORs) and population-attributable risks (PARs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for factors.

Results: Of 2,944 adjudicated stroke cases, 854 were intracerebral hemorrhage (ICH). Mean age of patients with ICH was 54.7 ± 13.9 years, with a male preponderance (63.1%), and 77.3% were nonlobar. Etiologic subtypes of sICH included hypertension (80.9%), structural vascular anomalies (4.0%), cerebral amyloid angiopathy (0.7%), systemic illnesses (0.5%), medication-related (0.4%), and undetermined (13.7%). Eight factors independently associated with sICH occurrence by decreasing order of PAR with their adjusted OR (95% CI) were hypertension, 66.63 (20.78-213.72); dyslipidemia, 2.95 (1.84-4.74); meat consumption, 1.55 (1.01-2.38); family history of CVD, 2.22 (1.41-3.50); nonconsumption of green vegetables, 3.61 (2.07-6.31); diabetes mellitus, 2.11 (1.29-3.46); stress, 1.68 (1.03-2.77); and current tobacco use, 14.27 (2.09-97.47). Factors associated with severe sICH using an NIH Stroke Scale score >15 with adjusted OR (95% CI) were nonconsumption of leafy green vegetables, 2.03 (1.43-2.88); systolic blood pressure for each mm Hg rise, 1.01 (1.00-1.01); presence of midline shift, 1.54 (1.11-2.13); lobar ICH, 1.72 (1.16-2.55); and supratentorial bleeds, 2.17 (1.06-4.46).

Conclusions: Population-level control of the dominant factors will substantially mitigate the burden of sICH in West Africa.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1212/WNL.0000000000009056DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7238923PMC
March 2020

Unraveling the Ethical, Legal, and Social Implications of Neurobiobanking and Stroke Genomic Research in Africa: A Study Protocol of the African Neurobiobank for Precision Stroke Medicine ELSI Project.

Int J Qual Methods 2020 Jan-Dec;19. Epub 2020 Jun 23.

Neuroscience and Ageing Research Unit, Institute for Advanced Medical Research and Training, College of Medicine, University of Ibadan, Nigeria.

The ethical, legal, and social implications (ELSI) of emerging neurobiobanks and data resources are unclear in an African scientific landscape with unique cultural, linguistic, and belief systems. The overarching goal of the African Neurobiobank for Precision Stroke Medicine-ELSI Project is to identify, examine, and develop novel approaches to address ELSI issues of biobanking and stroke genomic research in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). To accomplish the goal we will (1) explore knowledge, attitude, perceptions, barriers, and facilitators influencing ELSI issues related to biobanking and stroke genomic research; (2) use information obtained to craft a community intervention program focused on ELSI issues; and (3) build capacity and careers related to genomics and biobanking for effective client/community engagement while enhancing regulatory, governance, and implementation competences in biobanking science in SSA. A community-based participatory research and mixed-methodological approach, focused on various levels of the social ecological model, will be used to identify and examine relevant ELSI issues. Contextual intervention tools, platforms, and practices will be developed to enhance community understanding and participation in stroke biobanking and genomics research activities while facilitating enduring trust, and equitable and fair utilization of biobanking resources for genetic and trans-omics research. A concurrent capacity building program related to genetic counseling and biobanking will be implemented for early career researchers. The huge potential for neurobiobanking and genomics research in Africa to advance precision medicine applicable to stroke and other neurological disorders requires addressing ELSI challenges while building sustainable research, career, and regulatory capacities in trans-omics and biobanking science.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1609406920923194DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8284747PMC
June 2020

The Impact of 6-month Micronutrient Supplementation on Viral, Immunological, and Mental Health Profile of a Cohort of Highly Active Antiretroviral Therapy-Naive HIV-Positive Patients in Northern Nigeria.

Niger Med J 2019 May-Jun;60(3):149-155

Department of Internal Medicine, Kaduna State University, Kaduna, Kaduna State, Nigeria.

Background: HIV is a chronic disease with inflammatory reactions involving numerous elements of the immune system, resulting in an increased risk for other physical and psychiatric morbidities. Micronutrients, some of which possess anti-inflammatory properties, may help prevent the development of psychological disorders such as anxiety and depression in people living with HIV disease.

Objectives: This study examined the profile of viral load, CD4 cell count, C-reactive protein, anxiety, and depression among highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART)-naive HIV-positive patients receiving micronutrient supplementation over a 6-month period.

Materials And Methods: A total of ninety HAART-naïve HIV-infected patients completed the Hospital Anxiety Depression Scale. Their blood samples were taken for serum viral load, CD4 cell count, and C-reactive protein at baseline. They all received a micronutrient supplement for 6 months, and 68 participants who remained in treatment at 6 months were reassessed with the same parameters.

Results: After 6 months of micronutrient supplementation, the participants were found to have statistically significantly lower mean scores on the anxiety (-test = 2.970, = 0.003) and depression (-test = 3.843, = 0.001) subscales. They also had statistically significantly lower median CD4 cell count ( = 0.00) and C-reactive protein serum measures ( = 0.04). The median viral load decreased although the difference was not statistically significant.

Conclusion: Micronutrient supplementation may reduce inflammatory reactions, anxiety, and depression in HAART-naive HIV-infected persons.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.4103/nmj.NMJ_74_19DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6737804PMC
September 2019

Echocardiographic Abnormalities and Determinants of 1-Month Outcome of Stroke Among West Africans in the SIREN Study.

J Am Heart Assoc 2019 06 30;8(11):e010814. Epub 2019 May 30.

1 Center for Genomic and Precision Medicine University of Ibadan Ibadan Nigeria.

Background Little is known about the relationship between echocardiographic abnormalities and outcome among patients with acute stroke. We investigated the pattern and association of baseline echocardiographic variables with 1-month disability and mortality among patients with stroke in the SIREN (Stroke Investigative Research and Education Network) study. Methods and Results We enrolled and followed up consecutive 1020 adult patients with acute stroke with baseline transthoracic echocardiography from west Africa. To explore the relationship between echocardiographic variables and 1-month disability (using modified Rankin scale >3) and fatality, regression models were fitted. Relative risks were computed with 95% CIs. The participants comprised 60% men with a mean age of 59.2±14.6 years. Ischemic stroke was associated with smaller aortic root diameter (30.2 versus 32.5, P=0.018) and septal (16.8 versus 19.1, P<0.001) and posterior wall thickness at systole (18.9 versus 21.5, P=0.004). Over 90% of patients with stroke had abnormal left ventricular (LV) geometry with eccentric hypertrophy predominating (56.1%). Of 13 candidate variables investigated, only baseline abnormal LV geometry (concentric hypertrophy) was weakly associated with 1-month disability (unadjusted relative risk, 1.80; 95% CI , 0.97-5.73). Severe LV systolic dysfunction was significantly associated with increased 1-month mortality (unadjusted relative risk, 3.05; 95% CI , 1.36-6.83). Conclusions Nine of 10 patients with acute stroke had abnormal LV geometry and a third had systolic dysfunction. Severe LV systolic dysfunction was significantly associated with 1 month mortality. Larger studies are required to establish the independent effect and unravel predictive accuracy of this association.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/JAHA.118.010814DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6585359PMC
June 2019

Cryptococcal meningitis after ART: Need for proper baseline evaluation in the era of 'Test & Treat'.

Med Mycol Case Rep 2019 Jun 16;24:58-60. Epub 2019 Apr 16.

College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Lagos, Nigeria.

Cryptococcal meningitis (CM) contributes significantly to high early mortality in the setting of advanced HIV. In resource poor settings, the current HIV disease management approach is focused on commencing antiretroviral therapy (ART) on the same day of HIV diagnosis ('Test and Treat'). The HIV program in Nigeria does not currently provide CrAg screening for patients with newly diagnosed and advanced HIV disease. We report a case of severe cryptococcal meningitis presenting following the commencement of ART. There is clear benefit in the early commencement of ART among HIV infected patients and to prevent patients lost to follow-up as aimed with the 'Test & Treat' approach. However, this approach needs to be balanced against the risk of IRIS and its associated morbidity and mortality when those patients are not being properly evaluated for opportunistic infections being present without overt symptoms.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.mmcr.2019.04.003DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6479266PMC
June 2019

Differential Impact of Risk Factors on Stroke Occurrence Among Men Versus Women in West Africa.

Stroke 2019 04;50(4):820-827

Centre for Genomic and Precision Medicine, University of Ibadan, Nigeria (R.A., A.A., M.O.).

Background and Purpose- The interplay between sex and the dominant risk factors for stroke occurrence in sub-Saharan Africa has not been clearly delineated. We compared the effect sizes of risk factors of stroke by sex among West Africans. Methods- SIREN study (Stroke Investigative Research and Educational Networks) is a case-control study conducted at 15 sites in Ghana and Nigeria. Cases were adults aged >18 years with computerized tomography/magnetic resonance imaging confirmed stroke, and controls were age- and sex-matched stroke-free adults. Comprehensive evaluation for vascular, lifestyle, and psychosocial factors was performed using validated tools. We used conditional logistic regression to estimate odds ratios and reported risk factor specific and composite population attributable risks with 95% CIs. Results- Of the 2118 stroke cases, 1193 (56.3%) were males. The mean±SD age of males was 58.1±13.2 versus 60.15±14.53 years among females. Shared modifiable risk factors for stroke with adjusted odds ratios (95% CI) among females versus males, respectively, were hypertension [29.95 (12.49-71.77) versus 16.1 0(9.19-28.19)], dyslipidemia [2.08 (1.42-3.06) versus 1.83 (1.29-2.59)], diabetes mellitus [3.18 (2.11-4.78) versus 2.19 (1.53-3.15)], stress [2.34 (1.48-3.67) versus 1.61 (1.07-2.43)], and low consumption of green leafy vegetables [2.92 (1.89-4.50) versus 2.00 (1.33-3.00)]. However, salt intake and income were significantly different between males and females. Six modifiable factors had a combined population attributable risk of 99.1% (98.3%-99.6%) among females with 9 factors accounting for 97.2% (94.9%-98.7%) among males. Hemorrhagic stroke was more common among males (36.0%) than among females (27.6%), but stroke was less severe among males than females. Conclusions- Overall, risk factors for stroke occurrence are commonly shared by both sexes in West Africa favoring concerted interventions for stroke prevention in the region.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/STROKEAHA.118.022786DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6433514PMC
April 2019

Drug and therapeutics committees in Nigeria: evaluation of scope and functionality.

Expert Rev Clin Pharmacol 2018 Dec 30;11(12):1255-1262. Epub 2018 Nov 30.

j Division of Clinical Pharmacology, Department of Laboratory Medicine , Karolinska Institutet , Stockholm , Sweden.

: Inappropriate use of medicines remains a problem, with consequences including increasing adverse drug reactions (ADRs) and prolonged hospitalizations. The Essential Medicines List and Drug and Therapeutics Committees (DTCs) are accepted initiatives to promote the rational use of medicines. However, little is known about DTC activities in Nigeria, the most populous African country. : A cross-sectional questionnaire-based study was conducted among senior pharmacists, consultant physicians, and clinical pharmacologists in 12 leading tertiary health-care facilities across Nigeria. : Six (50%, 6/12) health-care facilities had existing DTCs with three (50%) having a subcommittee on antimicrobials. Seventy-five percent had infection control committees, with presence even in centers without DTCs. Chairpersons and secretaries of the DTCs were predominantly physicians (83.3%) and pharmacists (100%), respectively. Hospital formularies were available in five facilities with DTCs, while one facility without a DTC had an Essential Medicines Committee responsible for developing and updating the hospital formulary. The evaluation of ADRs was undertaken by pharmacovigilance units in nine facilities. Overall, DTCs were present in only half of the surveyed facilities and most were performing their statutory functions sub-optimally. The functioning of DTCs can be improved through government directives and mechanisms for continuous evaluation of activities.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17512433.2018.1549488DOI Listing
December 2018

Knowledge, attitudes and practices related to stroke in Ghana and Nigeria: A SIREN call to action.

PLoS One 2018 16;13(11):e0206548. Epub 2018 Nov 16.

University of Ghana Medical School, Accra, Ghana.

Introduction: Stroke is a prominent cause of death, disability, and dementia in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). The Stroke Investigative Research and Education Network works collaboratively with stroke survivors and individuals serving as community controls to comprehensively characterize the genomic, sociocultural, economic and behavioral risk factors for stroke in SSA.

Purpose: In this paper, we aim to: i) explore the attitudes, beliefs, and practices related to stroke in Ghana and Nigeria using the process of qualitative description; and ii) propose actions for future research and community-based participation and education.

Methods: Stroke survivors, their caregivers, health care professionals, and community representatives and faith-based leaders participated in one of twenty-six focus groups, which qualitatively explored community beliefs, attitudes and practices related to stroke in Ghana and Nigeria. Arthur Kleinman's Explanatory Model of Illness and the Social Ecological Model guided the questions and/or thematic analysis of the qualitative data. We hereby describe our focus group methods and analyses of qualitative data, as well as the findings and suggestions for improving stroke outcomes.

Results And Discussion: The major findings illustrate the fears, causes, chief problems, treatment, and recommendations related to stroke through the views of the participants, as well as recommendations for working effectively with the SIREN communities. Findings are compared to SIREN quantitative data and other qualitative studies in Africa. As far as we are aware, this is the first paper to qualitatively explore and contrast community beliefs, attitudes, and practices among stroke survivors and their caregivers, community and faith-based leaders, and health professionals in multiple communities within Nigeria and Ghana.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0206548PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6239297PMC
April 2019

Knowledge, attitudes and practices of West Africans on genetic studies of stroke: Evidence from the SIREN Study.

Int J Stroke 2019 01 24;14(1):69-79. Epub 2018 Jul 24.

7 Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital, Bayero University, Kano, Nigeria.

Background: It is crucial to assess genomic literacy related to stroke among Africans in preparation for the ethical, legal and societal implications of the genetic revolution which has begun in Africa.

Objective: To assess the knowledge, attitudes and practices (KAP) of West Africans about stroke genetic studies.

Methods: A comparative cross-sectional study was conducted among stroke patients and stroke-free controls recruited across 15 sites in Ghana and Nigeria. Participants' knowledge of heritability of stroke, willingness to undergo genetic testing and perception of the potential benefits of stroke genetic research were assessed using interviewer-administered questionnaire. Descriptive, frequency distribution and multiple regression analyses were performed.

Results: Only 49% of 2029 stroke patients and 57% of 2603 stroke-free individuals knew that stroke was a heritable disorder. Among those who knew, 90% were willing to undergo genetic testing. Knowledge of stroke heritability was associated with having at least post-secondary education (OR 1.51, 1.25-1.81) and a family history of stroke (OR 1.20, 1.03-1.39) while Islamic religion (OR=0.82, CI: 0.72-0.94), being currently unmarried (OR = 0.81, CI: 0.70-0.92), and alcohol use (OR = 0.78, CI: 0.67-0.91) were associated with lower odds of awareness of stroke as a heritable disorder. Willingness to undergo genetic testing for stroke was associated with having a family history of stroke (OR 1.34, 1.03-1.74) but inversely associated with a medical history of high blood pressure (OR = 0.79, 0.65-0.96).

Conclusion: To further improve knowledge of stroke heritability and willingness to embrace genetic testing for stroke, individuals with less formal education, history of high blood pressure and no family history of stroke require targeted interventions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1747493018790059DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8325169PMC
January 2019

Determining the feasibility and preliminary efficacy of a stroke instructional and educational DVD in a multinational context: a randomized controlled pilot study.

Clin Rehabil 2018 Aug 30;32(8):1086-1097. Epub 2018 May 30.

1 National Institute for Stroke and Applied Neurosciences, Auckland University of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand.

Objective: To assess the feasibility of conducting a randomized controlled trial of an instructional and educational stroke DVD and determine the feasibility and preliminary efficacy of this intervention in a multinational context.

Design: Non-funded, pilot randomized controlled trial of intervention versus usual care.

Setting: International, multicentre, community-based.

Participants: Community-living adults up to three years post stroke with moderate to severe disability and their nominated informal caregivers.

Interventions: Intervention patients viewed and practised rehabilitation techniques demonstrated in the DVD over six weeks.

Main Measures: Trial feasibility by number of active recruitment sites, recruitment efficiency, randomization and follow-up. Intervention feasibility by patient and caregiver impressions. Preliminary efficacy by the quality of life - 5-level EuroQol-5D (EQ-5D) health status measure, General Health Questionnaire and Centre for Epidemiological Studies-Depression at two months.

Results: In total, 14 recruitment sites were established across eight countries. Recruitment was achieved at nine (64%) sites. Over 16 months, 66 participants were recruited (mean (SD) age = 63.5 (12.47) years) and randomized to intervention ( n = 34) and control ( n = 32) groups. In total, 54 (82%) completed a follow-up assessment. Patient and/or caregiver comments about the benefits and barriers to accessing the intervention were mixed. There were no significant between-group differences in outcomes at two months ( P > 0.05).

Conclusion: Conducting a multinational trial of a stroke DVD requires full funding. The intervention was acceptable to some patients and their caregivers, yet a generalized education approach did not fully meet their needs and/or expectations. A more individualized method may be required to meet peoples' changing needs during stroke recovery.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0269215518777565DOI Listing
August 2018

Biobanking in a Challenging African Environment: Unique Experience from the SIREN Project.

Biopreserv Biobank 2018 Jun 7;16(3):217-232. Epub 2018 May 7.

Neurology Unit, Department of Medicine, Federal Medical Center, Umuahia, Nigeria.

Africa was previously insufficiently represented in the emerging discipline of biobanking despite commendable early efforts. However, with the Human, Heredity, and Health in Africa (H3Africa) initiative, biorepository science has been bolstered, regional biobanks are springing up, and awareness about biobanks is growing on the continent. The Stroke Investigative Research and Educational Network (SIREN) project is a transnational, multicenter, hospital and community-based study involving over 3000 cases and 3000 controls recruited from 16 sites in Ghana and Nigeria. SIREN aims to explore and unravel the genetic and environmental factors that interact to produce the peculiar phenotypic and clinical characteristics of stroke as seen in people of African ancestry and facilitate the development of new diagnostics, therapeutics, and preventative strategies. The aim of this article is to describe our experience with the development of the procedure for collection, processing, storage, and shipment of biological samples (blood, serum, plasma, buffy coat, red cell concentrates, and DNA) and brain imaging across coordinating and participating sites within the SIREN Project. The SIREN network was initiated in 2014 with support and funding from the H3Africa Initiative. The SIREN Biobank currently has 3015 brain images, 92,950 blood fractions (serum, plasma, red cell concentrates, and buffy coat) accrued from 8450 recruited subjects, and quantified and aliquoted good-quality DNA extracts from 6150 study subjects. This represents an invaluable resource for future research with expanding genomic and trans-omic technologies. This will facilitate the involvement of indigenous African samples in cutting-edge stroke genomics and trans-omics research. It is, however, critical to effectively engage African stroke patients and community members who have contributed precious biological materials to the SIREN Biobank to generate appropriate evidence base for dealing with ethical, legal, and social issues of privacy, autonomy, identifiability, biorights, governance issues, and public understanding of stroke biobanking in the context of unique African culture, language, and belief systems.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1089/bio.2017.0113DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5995267PMC
June 2018

Stroke Among Young West Africans: Evidence From the SIREN (Stroke Investigative Research and Educational Network) Large Multisite Case-Control Study.

Stroke 2018 05 4;49(5):1116-1122. Epub 2018 Apr 4.

Department of Neurology, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston (B.O., M.G., C.J.).

Background And Purpose: Stroke in lower and middle-income countries affects a young and productive age group. Data on factors associated with stroke in the young are sorely lacking from lower and middle-income countries. Our objective is to characterize the nature of stroke and its risk factors among young West Africans aged <50 years old.

Methods: The SIREN (Stroke Investigative Research and Educational Network) is a multicenter, case-control study involving 15 sites in Nigeria and Ghana. Cases included adults aged ≥18 years with computed tomography/magnetic resonance imaging-confirmed stroke. Controls were age-and gender-matched stroke-free adults recruited from the communities in catchment areas of cases. Comprehensive evaluation for vascular, lifestyle, and psychosocial factors was performed. We used conditional logistic regression to estimate odds ratios and population attributable risks with 95% confidence intervals.

Results: Five hundred fifteen (24.3%) out of 2118 cases enrolled were <50 years old. Among subjects <50 years old, hemorrhagic stroke proportion was 270 (52.5%) versus 245 (47.5%) for ischemic strokes. Etiologic subtypes of ischemic strokes included large artery atherosclerosis (40.0%), small vessel disease (28.6%), cardioembolism (11.0%), and undetermined (20.4%). Hypertension (91.7%), structural lesions (3.4%), and others (4.9%) were causally associated with hemorrhagic stroke. Six topmost modifiable factors associated with stroke in descending order of population attributable risk (95% confidence interval) were hypertension: 88.7% (82.5%-94.8%), dyslipidemia: 48.2% (30.6%-65.9%), diabetes mellitus: 22.6% (18.7%-26.5%), low green vegetable consumption: 18.2% (-6.8%-43.2%), stress: 14.5% (4.9%-24.1%), and cardiac disease: 8.4% (5.8%-11.1%).

Conclusions: The high and rising burden of stroke among young Africans should be curtailed via aggressive, population-wide vascular risk factor control.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/STROKEAHA.118.020783DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5916042PMC
May 2018

Dominant modifiable risk factors for stroke in Ghana and Nigeria (SIREN): a case-control study.

Lancet Glob Health 2018 04 26;6(4):e436-e446. Epub 2018 Feb 26.

Department of Neurology, Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SC, USA.

Background: Sub-Saharan Africa has the highest incidence, prevalence, and fatality from stroke globally. Yet, only little information about context-specific risk factors for prioritising interventions to reduce the stroke burden in sub-Saharan Africa is available. We aimed to identify and characterise the effect of the top modifiable risk factors for stroke in sub-Saharan Africa.

Methods: The Stroke Investigative Research and Educational Network (SIREN) study is a multicentre, case-control study done at 15 sites in Nigeria and Ghana. Cases were adults (aged ≥18 years) with stroke confirmed by CT or MRI. Controls were age-matched and gender-matched stroke-free adults (aged ≥18 years) recruited from the communities in catchment areas of cases. Comprehensive assessment for vascular, lifestyle, and psychosocial factors was done using standard instruments. We used conditional logistic regression to estimate odds ratios (ORs) and population-attributable risks (PARs) with 95% CIs.

Findings: Between Aug 28, 2014, and June 15, 2017, we enrolled 2118 case-control pairs (1192 [56%] men) with mean ages of 59·0 years (SD 13·8) for cases and 57·8 years (13·7) for controls. 1430 (68%) had ischaemic stoke, 682 (32%) had haemorrhagic stroke, and six (<1%) had discrete ischaemic and haemorrhagic lesions. 98·2% (95% CI 97·2-99·0) of adjusted PAR of stroke was associated with 11 potentially modifiable risk factors with ORs and PARs in descending order of PAR of 19·36 (95% CI 12·11-30·93) and 90·8% (95% CI 87·9-93·7) for hypertension, 1·85 (1·44-2·38) and 35·8% (25·3-46·2) for dyslipidaemia, 1·59 (1·19-2·13) and 31·1% (13·3-48·9) for regular meat consumption, 1·48 (1·13-1·94) and 26·5% (12·9-40·2) for elevated waist-to-hip ratio, 2·58 (1·98-3·37) and 22·1% (17·8-26·4) for diabetes, 2·43 (1·81-3·26) and 18·2% (14·1-22·3) for low green leafy vegetable consumption, 1·89 (1·40-2·54) and 11·6% (6·6-16·7) for stress, 2·14 (1·34-3·43) and 5·3% (3·3-7·3) for added salt at the table, 1·65 (1·09-2·49) and 4·3% (0·6-7·9) for cardiac disease, 2·13 (1·12-4·05) and 2·4% (0·7-4·1) for physical inactivity, and 4·42 (1·75-11·16) and 2·3% (1·5-3·1) for current cigarette smoking. Ten of these factors were associated with ischaemic stroke and six with haemorrhagic stroke occurrence.

Interpretation: Implementation of interventions targeting these leading risk factors at the population level should substantially curtail the burden of stroke among Africans.

Funding: National Institutes of Health.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S2214-109X(18)30002-0DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5906101PMC
April 2018

Immune Dysfunction in HIV: A Possible Role for Pro- and Anti-Inflammatory Cytokines in HIV Staging.

J Immunol Res 2017 2;2017:4128398. Epub 2017 Nov 2.

Department of Medicine, Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital, Shika-Zaria, Nigeria.

HIV infection is a chronic infection that almost inevitably progresses to AIDS. The infection is characterized by the deterioration in the immune function leading to opportunistic infections and malignancies. Additionally, there is an associated immune dysfunction characterized by a persistent inflammatory state and unhealthy elaboration of both pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines. The CD4 T cell count has been used as a surrogate for the level of immune dysfunction that exists in patients with HIV infection. Eighty-eight (88) patients with HIV infection, forty-four (44) of whom were treatment naïve patients and forty-four (44) who were treatment-experienced patients, were recruited. The serum concentrations of cytokines IL-6 and IL-10 were carried out using R&D human ELISA kits, while patients' CD4 T cell counts were evaluated using the . The serum IL-6 and IL-10 concentrations were significantly higher among the AR-naïve participants compared to the ART-experienced group. Additionally, the IL-6 and IL-10 concentrations were higher in patients with lower CD4 T cell count compared to those with higher cell counts though this was not statistically significant. Also, both IL-6 and IL-10 concentrations were higher in patients with higher WHO clinical staging of disease, significantly so for IL-6.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2017/4128398DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5688255PMC
August 2018

Development and Reliability of a User-Friendly Multicenter Phenotyping Application for Hemorrhagic and Ischemic Stroke.

J Stroke Cerebrovasc Dis 2017 Nov 29;26(11):2662-2670. Epub 2017 Jul 29.

University of Ghana Medical School, Accra, Ghana.

Background: Annotation and Image Markup on ClearCanvas Enriched Stroke-phenotyping Software (ACCESS) is a novel stand-alone computer software application that allows the creation of simple standardized annotations for reporting brain images of all stroke types. We developed the ACCESS application and determined its inter-rater and intra-rater reliability in the Stroke Investigative Research and Educational Network (SIREN) study to assess its suitability for multicenter studies.

Methods: One hundred randomly selected stroke imaging reports from 5 SIREN sites were re-evaluated by 4 trained independent raters to determine the inter-rater reliability of the ACCESS (version 12.0) software for stroke phenotyping. To determine intra-rater reliability, 6 raters reviewed the same cases previously reported by them after a month of interval. Ischemic stroke was classified using the Oxfordshire Community Stroke Project (OCSP), Trial of Org 10172 in Acute Stroke Treatment (TOAST), and Atherosclerosis, Small-vessel disease, Cardiac source, Other cause (ASCO) protocols, while hemorrhagic stroke was classified using the Structural lesion, Medication, Amyloid angiopathy, Systemic disease, Hypertensive angiopathy and Undetermined (SMASH-U) protocol in ACCESS. Agreement among raters was measured with Cohen's kappa statistics.

Results: For primary stroke type, inter-rater agreement was .98 (95% confidence interval [CI], .94-1.00), while intra-rater agreement was 1.00 (95% CI, 1.00). For OCSP subtypes, inter-rater agreement was .97 (95% CI, .92-1.00) for the partial anterior circulation infarcts, .92 (95% CI, .76-1.00) for the total anterior circulation infarcts, and excellent for both lacunar infarcts and posterior circulation infarcts. Intra-rater agreement was .97 (.90-1.00), while inter-rater agreement was .93 (95% CI, .84-1.00) for TOAST subtypes. Inter-rater agreement ranged between .78 (cardioembolic) and .91 (large artery atherosclerotic) for ASCO subtypes and was .80 (95% CI, .56-1.00) for SMASH-U subtypes.

Conclusion: The ACCESS application facilitates a concordant and reproducible classification of stroke subtypes by multiple investigators, making it suitable for clinical use and multicenter research.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jstrokecerebrovasdis.2017.06.042DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5624839PMC
November 2017

Interleukin-6 (IL-6) rs1800796 and cyclin dependent kinase inhibitor (CDKN2A/CDKN2B) rs2383207 are associated with ischemic stroke in indigenous West African Men.

J Neurol Sci 2017 Aug 23;379:229-235. Epub 2017 May 23.

University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria; WFNR-Blossom Specialist Medical Center Ibadan, Nigeria.

Background: Inherited genetic variations offer a possible explanation for the observed peculiarities of stroke in sub - Saharan African populations. Interleukin-6 polymorphisms have been previously associated with ischemic stroke in some non-African populations.

Aim: Herein we investigated, for the first time, the association of genetic polymorphisms of IL-6, CDKN2A- CDKN2B and other genes with ischemic stroke among indigenous West African participants in the Stroke Investigative Research and Education Network (SIREN) Study.

Methods: Twenty-three previously identified single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in 14 genes of relevance to the neurobiology of ischemic stroke were investigated. Logistic regression models adjusting for known cardiovascular disease risk factors were constructed to assess the associations of the 23 SNPs in rigorously phenotyped cases (N=429) of ischemic stroke (Men=198; Women=231) and stroke- free (N=483) controls (Men=236; Women=247).

Results: Interleukin-6 (IL6) rs1800796 (C minor allele; frequency: West Africans=8.6%) was significantly associated with ischemic stroke in men (OR=2.006, 95% CI=[1.065, 3.777], p=0.031) with hypertension in the model but not in women. In addition, rs2383207 in CDKN2A/CDKN2B (minor allele A with frequency: West Africans=1.7%) was also associated with ischemic stroke in men (OR=2.550, 95% CI=[1.027, 6.331], p=0.044) with primary covariates in the model, but not in women. Polymorphisms in other genes did not show significant association with ischemic stroke.

Conclusion: Polymorphisms rs1800796 in IL6 gene and rs2383207 in CDKN2A/CDKN2B gene have significant associations with ischemic stroke in indigenous West African men. CDKN2A/CDKN2B SNP rs2383207 is independently associated with ischemic stroke in indigenous West African men. Further research should focus on the contributions of inflammatory genes and other genetic polymorphisms, as well as the influence of sex on the neurobiology of stroke in people of African ancestry.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jns.2017.05.046DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5546618PMC
August 2017

Stroke in Indigenous Africans, African Americans, and European Americans: Interplay of Racial and Geographic Factors.

Stroke 2017 05 7;48(5):1169-1175. Epub 2017 Apr 7.

From the Department of Medicine (M.O., E.M.) and Department of Radiology (G.O.), University of Ibadan, Nigeria; Department of Medicine, Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital, Kumasi, Ghana (F.S.); Department of Epidemiology (V.J.H., M.R.I.) and Department of Biostatistics (A.B., H.K.T., G.H.), University of Alabama at Birmingham; Department of Public Health Sciences (M.G.), Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Sciences (K.A.), Department of Neurology (R.S., D.T.L., B.O.), and Department of Nursing (C.J.), Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston; Department of Internal Medicine, Federal Medical Centre, Abeokuta, Nigeria (R.A.); Department of Medicine and Therapeutics, University of Ghana, Accra (A.A., R.L.); Department of Medicine, University of Ilorin, Nigeria (K.W.W.); Department of Medicine, Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital, Nigeria (L.O.); Department of Medicine, Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospital, Ile-Ife, Nigeria (B.F., M.K.); Department of Medicine, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Nigeria (R.O.); Department of Internal Medicine, Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Ogbomoso, Nigeria (P.A.); Department of Neurology, Columbia University, New York (J.M.M.); and College of Public Health, University of Kentucky at Lexington (D.K.A.).

Background And Purpose: The relative contributions of racial and geographic factors to higher risk of stroke in people of African ancestry have not been unraveled. We compared stroke type and contributions of vascular risk factors among indigenous Africans (IA), African Americans (AA), and European Americans (EA).

Methods: SIREN (Stroke Investigative Research and Educational Network) is a large multinational case-control study in West Africa-the ancestral home of 71% AA-whereas REGARDS (Reasons for Geographic and Racial Differences in Stroke) is a cohort study including AA and EA in the United States. Using harmonized assessments and standard definitions, we compared data on stroke type and established risk factors for stroke in acute stroke cases aged ≥55 years in both studies.

Results: There were 811 IA, 452 AA, and 665 EA stroke subjects, with mean age of 68.0±9.3, 73.0±8.3, and 76.0±8.3 years, respectively (<0.0001). Hemorrhagic stroke was more frequent among IA (27%) compared with AA (8%) and EA (5.4%; <0.001). Lacunar strokes were more prevalent in IA (47.1%), followed by AA (35.1%) and then EA (21.0%; <0.0001). The frequency of hypertension in decreasing order was IA (92.8%), followed by AA (82.5%) and then EA (64.2%; <0.0001) and similarly for diabetes mellitus IA (38.3%), AA (36.8%), and EA (21.0%; <0.0001). Premorbid sedentary lifestyle was similar in AA (37.7%) and EA (34.0%) but lower frequency in IA (8.0%).

Conclusions: Environmental risk factors such as sedentary lifestyle may contribute to the higher proportion of ischemic stroke in AA compared with IA, whereas racial factors may contribute to the higher proportion of hypertension and diabetes mellitus among stroke subjects of African ancestry.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1161/STROKEAHA.116.015937DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5404953PMC
May 2017

Prevalence and Prognostic Features of ECG Abnormalities in Acute Stroke: Findings From the SIREN Study Among Africans.

Glob Heart 2017 06 14;12(2):99-105. Epub 2017 Mar 14.

University of Ghana Medical School, Accra, Ghana.

Background: Africa has a growing burden of stroke with associated high morbidity and a 3-year fatality rate of 84%. Cardiac disease contributes to stroke occurrence and outcomes, but the precise relationship of abnormalities as noted on a cheap and widely available test, the electrocardiogram (ECG), and acute stroke outcomes have not been previously characterized in Africans.

Objectives: The study assessed the prevalence and prognoses of various ECG abnormalities among African acute stroke patients encountered in a multisite, cross-national epidemiologic study.

Methods: We included 890 patients from Nigeria and Ghana with acute stroke who had 12-lead ECG recording within first 24 h of admission and stroke classified based on brain computed tomography scan or magnetic resonance imaging. Stroke severity at baseline was assessed using the Stroke Levity Scale (SLS), whereas 1-month outcome was assessed using the modified Rankin Scale (mRS).

Results: Patients' mean age was 58.4 ± 13.4 years, 490 were men (55%) and 400 were women (45%), 65.5% had ischemic stroke, and 85.4% had at least 1 ECG abnormality. Women were significantly more likely to have atrial fibrillation, or left ventricular hypertrophy with or without strain pattern. Compared to ischemic stroke patients, hemorrhagic stroke patients were less likely to have atrial fibrillation (1.0% vs. 6.7%; p = 0.002), but more likely to have left ventricular hypertrophy (64.4% vs. 51.4%; p = 0.004). Odds of severe disability or death at 1 month were higher with severe stroke (AOR: 2.25; 95% confidence interval: 1.44 to 3.50), or atrial enlargement (AOR: 1.45; 95% confidence interval: 1.04 to 2.02).

Conclusions: About 4 in 5 acute stroke patients in this African cohort had evidence of a baseline ECG abnormality, but presence of any atrial enlargement was the only independent ECG predictor of death or disability.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.gheart.2017.01.002DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5582979PMC
June 2017

Exploring Overlaps Between the Genomic and Environmental Determinants of LVH and Stroke: A Multicenter Study in West Africa.

Glob Heart 2017 06 13;12(2):107-113.e5. Epub 2017 Mar 13.

University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria.

Background: Whether left ventricular hypertrophy (LVH) is determined by similar genomic and environmental risk factors with stroke, or is simply an intermediate stroke marker, is unknown.

Objectives: We present a research plan and preliminary findings to explore the overlap in the genomic and environmental determinants of LVH and stroke among Africans participating in the SIREN (Stroke Investigative Research and Education Network) study.

Methods: SIREN is a transnational, multicenter study involving acute stroke patients and age-, ethnicity-, and sex-matched control subjects recruited from 9 sites in Ghana and Nigeria. Genomic and environmental risk factors and other relevant phenotypes for stroke and LVH are being collected and compared using standard techniques.

Results: This preliminary analysis included only 725 stroke patients (mean age 59.1 ± 13.2 years; 54.3% male). Fifty-five percent of the stroke subjects had LVH with greater proportion among women (51.6% vs. 48.4%; p < 0.001). Those with LVH were younger (57.9 ± 12.8 vs. 60.6 ± 13.4; p = 0.006) and had higher mean systolic and diastolic blood pressure (167.1/99.5 mm Hg vs 151.7/90.6 mm Hg; p < 0.001). Uncontrolled blood pressure at presentation was prevalent in subjects with LVH (76.2% vs. 57.7%; p < 0.001). Significant independent predictors of LVH were age <45 years (adjusted odds ratio [AOR]: 1.91; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.14 to 3.19), female sex (AOR: 2.01; 95% CI: 1.44 to 2.81), and diastolic blood pressure > 90 mm Hg (AOR: 2.10; 95% CI: 1.39 to 3.19; p < 0.001).

Conclusions: The prevalence of LVH was high among stroke patients especially the younger ones, suggesting a genetic component to LVH. Hypertension was a major modifiable risk factor for stroke as well as LVH. It is envisaged that the SIREN project will elucidate polygenic overlap (if present) between LVH and stroke among Africans, thereby defining the role of LVH as a putative intermediate cardiovascular phenotype and therapeutic target to inform interventions to reduce stroke risk in populations of African ancestry.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.gheart.2017.01.001DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5583025PMC
June 2017

Medication errors among health professionals in Nigeria: A national survey.

Int J Risk Saf Med 2016 Aug;28(2):77-91

Federal Medical Centre, Jalingo, Nigeria.

Background: Medication errors are preventable causes of patient harm with significant contributions to adverse drug events but they remain understudied in Nigeria.

Objectives: To estimate the prevalence of self-reported medication errors among health professionals and examine their knowledge of medication errors with the hope of identifying appropriate measures to promote medication safety.

Methods: A cross sectional survey among doctors, pharmacists and nurses in 10 tertiary hospitals. Information was obtained using a self-administered structured questionnaire. Correct responses evaluating the knowledge of prescription, dispensing and administration errors were scored one mark each and the composite scores computed. Appropriate statistics were applied to summarize and establish the relationship between variables at 5% level of significance using SPSS 17.0.

Results: A total of 2,386 professionals participated in the study (46.3% nurses, 44.9% doctors, 8.8% pharmacists).The prevalence of self-reported medication errors was 47%.The professional groups differ in their knowledge of all the aspects of medication errors with professional cadres influencing knowledge.Overwork was the most reason for being error prone (59.2%) and only 35.5% had ever reported medication error. 33.4% did not think reporting was necessary.

Conclusions: The prevalence of medication errors is high among health care professionals in Nigeria. Knowledge gaps and practice deficiencies were identified requiring interventions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3233/JRS-160721DOI Listing
August 2016

PATTERN AND OUTCOME OF TETANUS IN A TERTIARY HEALTH FACILITY IN NORTH WEST NIGERIA.

Ethiop Med J 2016 Apr;54(2):69-75

Background: Tetanus, a disease that is largely preventable, is still a major public health problem in the developing world and is associated with high morbidity and mortality. There is a paucity of published literature on adult (non-neonatal) tetanus in this study area in Nigeria.

Methods: This was a study describing the clinical characteristics of patients who were clinically diagnosed with tetanus in Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital (ABUTH) Zaria, northwest of Nigeria between January 2001 and December 2014.

Results: A total of 91 cases were reviewed. The mean patient age was 20 years, and male to female ratio 2.9:1. The majority (88%) of patients were < 40 years old. The mean onset period was 19 days, nearly all patients (96.7%) had generalized tetanus, and the commonest presenting signs were spasm (93.4%) and trimus (78.0%). The most common site of injury was lower limbs (64.8% of cases). The complication rate was 71.4% and case fatality was 48.4%.

Conclusion: Tetanus is still a major public health problem in our setting and affects the younger age group with a high case fatality rate. The incidence of tetanus can be reduced drastically by an effective and sustained immunization program.
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April 2016

Validation of the 8-item questionnaire for verifying stroke free status with and without pictograms in three West African languages.

eNeurologicalSci 2016 Jun;3:75-79

University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria.

Background: The Questionnaire for Verifying Stroke-free Status (QVSFS) has been validated in Western populations as a method for verifying stroke-free status in participants of clinical, epidemiological and genetic studies. This instrument has not been validated in low-income settings where populations have limited knowledge of stroke symptoms and literacy levels are low.

Objective: To simultaneously validate the 8-item QVSFS in 3 languages spoken in West Africa (Yoruba, Hausa and Akan) for ascertainment of stroke-free status of control subjects in SIREN.

Methods: Using a cross-sectional study design, 100 participants each from the 3 linguistic groups will be consecutively recruited from neurology and general medicine clinics of 5 tertiary referral hospitals in Nigeria and Ghana. Ascertainment of stroke status will be determined by neurologists using structured neurological examination, review of case records and neuro-imaging (Gold standard). The relative performance of QVSFS without and with pictures of stroke symptoms (pictograms) will be assessed using sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value (PPV) and negative predictive value (NPV).

Conclusion: The proposed study will provide valuable data on the performance of the QVSFS in resource-limited settings.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ensci.2016.03.004DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4852153PMC
June 2016

Stroke Investigative Research and Education Network: Community Engagement and Outreach Within Phenomics Core.

Health Educ Behav 2016 04;43(1 Suppl):82S-92S

University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria.

Stroke is the leading cause of neurological hospital admissions in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) and the second leading cause of death globally. The Stroke Investigative Research and Education Network seeks to comprehensively characterize the genomic, sociocultural, economic, and behavioral risk factors for stroke and to build effective teams for research to address and decrease the burden of stroke and other noncommunicable diseases in SSA. One of the first steps to address this goal is to effectively engage the communities that suffer the high burden of disease. The purpose of this article is to describe plans to elucidate information about knowledge, attitudes, beliefs, and practices about stroke and genomics from patients, caregivers, and local leaders, to recruit participation in research activities and dissemination of ongoing results, as well as to facilitate research uptake and impact within the broader communities of scientists, health professionals, policy makers, and others. We describe the (a) study sites and their communities; (b) plans for community advisory boards, focus groups, and surveys; (c) methods for data management in REDCap database; (d) analyses of qualitative data; (e) evaluation of community and public engagement across multiple sites and research teams in SSA and the United States; (f) use of RE-AIM for presentation of evaluation data; and (g) community indicators of success. This is the first of its kind public outreach engagement initiative to evaluate stroke and genomics in SSA, and has implications as a model for assessment in other high-stroke risk populations.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1090198116634082DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4905563PMC
April 2016
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