Stroke Action Plan for Europe presented at UK Stroke Forum Conference 2018

Stroke Action Plan for Europe presented at UK Stroke Forum Conference 2018

Jon Barrick, SAFE President, presented Stroke ACtion Plan for Europe 2018-2030 at the 13th UK Stroke Forum Conference (#UKSF18). The #UKSF18 took place at The International Centre, Telford,UK, from 4 – 6 December 2018.
“There was a great need for a document such as the Stroke Action Plan for Europe. Many European countries do not have a national stroke plan or strategy and many of them only have partial coverage of the stroke care pathway in their plans” said Barrick.

This 3 day multidisciplinary conference brought together over 110 expert speakers and researchers, all committed to improving stroke care.

About UK Stroke Forum

The UK Stroke Forum is a coalition of over 30 organisations all committed to improving stroke care in the UK. The coalition is underwritten by the Stroke Association UK.

Photo by Sarah Belson

 

A ‘tongue in cheek’ report from SAFE Working Conference

A ‘tongue in cheek’ report from SAFE Working Conference

Roman Shwed from Ukraine is a stroke survivor and a first-time attendee at SAFE Working Conference in Berlin. He shared with us his unique view of this event, kindly agreeing that we share it further with the world. We at SAFE believe you will enjoy it… (In the photo above, Roman Shwed is the first person on the left).

A “TOUNGUE IN CHEEK”, SHORT REPORT ‘SO TO SPEAK’, OF MY WONDERFUL EXPERIENCES IN THE CITY OF BERLIN, GERMANY, NOT TO BE CONFUSED WITH BERLIN, NEW JERSEY, OR ANY OTHER BERLIN ON THE PLANET…

…anyway,

I’m talking about our “SAFE 2018 WORKING CONFERENCE”, which was masterfully dreamed up, programmed, and prepared, by Jon Barrick, the Prez., his VP Markus Wagner, plus Secretary Monique Lindhout, Treasurer Grethe Lunde, Board Members Ivan Milojevic’, Anita Arsovska, Pnina Rosensweig, Kolbrun Stefansdottir, and on the 27th through 30th November, professionally executed by the staff which included Sandra Jackson, Lucinda Shaw, Gary Randall, Jelena Misita, and Victoria Brewer. If I missed anyone, or misspelled a name, kindly forgive my mistakes…this was the very first, never ever before attended, SAFE Working Conference in my whole life, and I meticulously copied all that info from the SAFE Annual Report…so there !

 

…but I digress,

 

If anyone has any doubts about my feelings about this conference, let me tell you, I was duly impressed, wow-ed, amazed, and, …in a word, the conference “knocked my socks off” ! I learned a bunch of new stuff about “Life after Stroke”, and reflected on my own situation. What kind of Stroke did I experience ? After seeing all the Delegates, especially other Stroke survivors, and remembering what the 3 types of Stroke are, namely:  Ischemic, Hemorrhagic,  and TIA, my opinion about my Stroke changed dramatically.

 

Now when friends on the street will ask me, “Roman, why do you walk so funny ?”, I’d explain that “Moi had a Stroke”…then they usually asked me, politely, “oh?… what kind of Stroke was it ?”, showing off their assumed Stroke knowledge. I used to be very exact in my replies, telling them that it was an Ischemic Stroke, and then, the questioner would, invariably, nod his or her head, sympathetically. Well, this routine is changing, and from now, when asked, I will tell them, “I had STROKE LIGHT ”, for which they’ll have no smarty pants reply, and also this will, hopefully, generate no additional questions. I did, for a while, consider calling mine the Diet Coke way, like “DIET STROKE”, but it just wasn’t sexy enough.

 

…but, again, I digress,

 

My friend Dr.Dmytro Gulyayev, (my Ukrainian co-conspirator), who took care of my Stroke recovering body, introduced me to Sandra, and we immediately became friends, but then small wonder, everyone else who was there accepted me and my ‘Drunken Sailor’ walk without question. It’s really comforting to be among people that understand what you went through, and are still, like you, overcoming this health burp in their life. The Conference was peopled by Delegates from “almost” all European Countries, but everyone spoke English…well, let me clarify. There is the Queen’s English, as spoken by Jon, Sandra, and a few others, then there was some Brogue English, as spoken by my Irish & Northern Irish friends, a little North American English, like mine, and the rest spoke European, or as I fondly refer to, YODA English. Yoda would be very proud of us all, because every single  Delegate is battling the DARK STROKE Force like a true Jedi Knight !

 

…but I can’t help myself…I still digress,

 

As the second day came into play, Integrated Care in Germany was presented by Markus Wagner, our V.P., and then Michael Brinkmieir, the Chairman of the German Stroke Foundation, had a very good presentation of Case & Care Management in East Westphalia. Our table started to speculate…”if there is a Westphalia, there must be an Eastphalia, and therefore – a West Eastphalia”…but we never reached a final agreement, so if you have any doubts, just GOOGLE it. Anyway, the Workshops were great, and very useful, especially to a “nebish” like me. Dmytro and I were there to Listen & Learn, and our East Cluster Workshop,  which was in Hamburg…the Room, not the Burg, explained our moderator, and allayed our fears of having to travel to another City.

 

If I have any complaints, it’s about the food. The meals were great, tasty, and I think that I must have gained a kilo or two. It just isn’t fair to guy’s like me, when you place such tasty temptations before us. The Wednesday Night Feast at Maximillian’s was superb, and I’m sure that our ladies enjoyed the waiters in “Lederhosen”. I believe that everyone, Staff and Jedi Knight, had 2 pretzels each, but who cares as long as no one broke into song or yodelling.

 

ALL THAT’S LEFT TO SAY IS A GREAT BIG THANK YOU TO THE LEADERSHIP & STAFF OF SAFE, AND OUR WONDERFUL SPONSORS … “THANK YOU” IS CERTAINLY AN UNDERSTATEMENT…BECAUSE MY VOCABULARY IS TOO LIMITED TO DO JUSTICE TO THE BERLIN CONFERENCE,

 

AND I MUST ADD A HEARTFELT – “YO, AND A FIST BUMP”, THANK YOU DELEGATES – JEDI KNIGHTS ALL … MAY THE SAFE FORCE BE WITH YOU !

I DID MEET SOME OF YOU PERSONALLY, AND LOOK FORWARD TO MEETING THE REST OF YOU REAL SOON !

 

SMILINGLY YOURS,

 

Roman “Toungue in Cheek” Shwed,

UKRAINE

 

 

 

 

 

SAFE Working Conference and General Assembly 2018

SAFE Working Conference and General Assembly 2018

SAFE held this year’s Working Conference and the General Assembly in Berlin, Germany. The event was very well attended, with over 100 delegates and representatives of SAFE’s industry partners.

The hosting organisation was the Stiftung Deutsche Schlaganfall Hilfe, SAFE’s member organisation from Germany, whose President, Michael Brinkmeier presented their latest projects to the auditorium. SAFE President Jon Barrick and ESO Board member Heinrich Audebert gave presentations on how the Stroke Action Plan for Europe 2018-2030 was created, including the overarching recommendations on the seven domains, from Primary Prevention to Life After Stroke.

The working conference was dedicated to updating our members on the current projects and presenting plans for the next period, until 2020 and beyond.

Stroke Support Organisation Faculty Tool was completed just before the SAFE’s annual gathering and SSOFT Project Director, Victoria Brewer gave a wrap up, summarizing the achievements and giving recommendations for future use and increased engagement.

You can access the complete Working Conference Agenda here.

On Friday, 30th November, SAFE had a General Assembly. Three new Board members were elected: Grethe Lunde from Norway (Norsk forening for slagrammede (NFS)) as a North Cluster Representative, Chris Macey from Ireland (Irish Heart Foundation) as Treasurer and Marina Charalambous from Cyprus (Cyprus Stroke Organisation) as Board Member at Large.

Two new organisations were ratified and became full SAFE members: Porážka.sk from Slovakia and CEREBRUM from Czech Republic.

SAFE awarded stroke support organisations from the following countries: Turkey, Spain, Serbia,Croatia, Portugal, Iceland and Cyprus for their work in fighting stroke, supporting survivors and their families and building the patient voice during 2018.

In addition, SAFE Annual Report and Strategy were discussed, as well as the upcoming SAFE political activities at EU level.

 

 

Podcast #3 – Three-dimension view on stroke

Podcast #3 – Three-dimension view on stroke

Stroke can happen to anyone, anytime. We spoke with Hrvoje Jurlina, MD, who has a unique perspective on stroke, being a medical professional, a young stroke survivor and a caregiver who recently lost his father to stroke. Hrvoje Jurlina is the Second Vice-President of Croatian Stroke Society, which is a SAFE member.

Please click on the picture below to access the audio file.

Stress-induced effects on heart blood flow differ for men versus women

Stress-induced effects on heart blood flow differ for men versus women

First published on ScienceDaily.com

Some patients with coronary artery disease have inadequate blood flow to the heart muscle during periods of mental/emotional stress. This condition — called “mental stress-induced myocardial ischemia” (MSIMI) — is related to the severity of plaque buildup in the coronary arteries in men but not women, reports a study in Psychosomatic Medicine: Journal of Biobehavioral Medicine, the official journal of the American Psychosomatic Society. The journal is published in the Lippincott Portfolio by Wolters Kluwer.

Mental stress-induced myocardial ischemia occurs in both men and women, although younger women tend to have more of this phenomenon. While MSIMI is linked to worse cardiovascular outcomes in both sexes, there may be sex differences in the mechanism through which stress can trigger MSIMI, according to new research by Viola Vaccarino, Md, PhD, and colleagues, of Emory University School of Public Health and School of Medicine, Atlanta.

Heart Response to Stress Linked to Coronary Plaque Severity in Men, but Not Women

The researchers examined the sex-specific association between coronary plaque buildup (obstructive coronary disease) assessed from angiograms and MSIMI in 276 participants — 141 men and 135 women — with recent myocardial infarction (heart attack). The study targeted young and middle-aged adults (under age 61). All participants underwent conventional stress testing to evaluate myocardial blood flow in response to a physical or pharmacological challenge (either an exercise stress test or a pharmacological stress test) .

The patients also underwent a mental stress test, which evaluated myocardial blood flow in response to a stressful situation (a public speaking task). Based on a reduction in myocardial blood flow during this stressful challenge, 17 percent of patients were classified as having MSIMI.

Women had a higher rate of MSIMI (20 percent) than men (15 percent). Twenty-seven percent of patients had conventional stress-induced myocardial ischemia (CSIMI). Only 10 percent of patients had both MSIMI and CSIMI.

In both men and women, the presence of CSIMI was associated with greater obstructive coronary disease severity. For each one-unit increase in severity score, the likelihood of CSIMI increased by about 50 percent, after adjustment for other factors.

In contrast, the presence of MSIMI was associated with more severe plaque buildup only in men: for each one-unit increase in severity score, the likelihood of MSIMI nearly doubled. For women, MSIMI was unrelated to obstructive coronary disease severity.

“There is growing evidence that psychosocial stressors may promote the development and progression of cardiovascular disease in susceptible individuals,” according to the authors. However, the relationship between MSIMI and obstructive coronary disease, which means blockages in the major coronary arteries supplying blood to the heart muscle, has been unclear. Women are more likely than men to develop myocardial ischemia without coronary obstruction.

The results support the hypothesis that MSIMI may develop via different mechanisms in women versus men. Consistent with previous findings on sex differences in heart disease, it may be that MSIMI in women mainly reflect abnormalities other than blockage of the coronary arteries, such as malfunction of the smaller coronary blood vessels (microcirculatory dysfunction).

The sex differences may have important implications for understanding sex-specific vascular effects of psychological stress in general and the mechanisms of MSIMI in particular, since most previous studies of this issue have focused on men. Dr. Vaccarino and colleagues conclude, “These results suggest that MSIMI must be driven by alternative mechanisms especially among women, and provide motivation for further research to understand sex-specific mechanisms for the effects of mental stress on myocardial ischemia and long-term outcomes.”

Story Source:Wolters Kluwer Health. “Stress-induced effects on heart blood flow differ for men versus women.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 26 November 2018. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/11/181126154101.htm>.