Too few women in stroke investigate a problem – Vetenskapsradion Nyheter

A stroke affects both men and women. Nevertheless, it is a global and ongoing trend that women are underrepresented in clinical trials of stroke treatments. In two articles in the journal Stroke, researchers now highlight several reasons why it looks like this and propose measures. Something that Mia von Euler, stroke researcher and professor of neurology at Örebro University, appreciates.

– That thing with underrepresentation in studies is such an important issue of principle. It’s something people talk about but don’t make science out of. Then it tends to disappear.

The lack of women in stroke studies is a problem because it means there is less knowledge about how different treatments work in women.

One of the main limitations that researchers are addressing is the age limit. In clinical trials, there is often an upper limit on how old the participants can be. It usually occurs at the age of 80 and since women often become ill 5-6 years later than men, often after the age of 80, they are at risk of being systematically excluded. The authors of the article therefore suggest avoiding a higher age limit, something Mia von Euler agrees.

– Precisely with regard to these diseases, which mainly affect the elderly, it is important that we study the elderly. Because they are the big group that we want to know how to treat.

To identify others reasons why fewer women participate in studies, the researchers also suggest that more qualitative and quantitative studies should be done. That you need to record which people are asked to participate in a survey to see if there is a pattern in gender, age or language – or in how, when or where they are asked.

– It’s also an important issue. Is it true that women are not asked or is it that women who are asked say no? There are two different problems to work with, says Mia von Euler, a stroke researcher and professor of neurology.

Reference:

https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2021-01/aha-dsa011921.php

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