NPR

Africa Is Suffering A Silent Crisis Of Stroke

The largest-ever study of stroke patients in Africa reveals a high rate of a particularly risky type of brain incident. What's the problem? And what's the solution?
A computer-enhanced scan of a brain showing a hemorrhage due to hypertension. Source: Scott Camazine

Last April, Fredua Agyemang, a musician in Kumasi, Ghana, was performing onstage at a funeral, which in this country is often a festive affair with hundreds of guests. Suddenly he began to feel dizzy, then lost consciousness and collapsed.

When he woke up three days later, his band-mates broke the news: He'd suffered a stroke. Immediately, he thought of another doctor visit eight years earlier, when, at the age of 34, he'd been diagnosed with hypertension and prescribed medication to reduce his blood pressure. The medication had given him problems with erectile dysfunction, a common side effect, and he soon stopped taking it regularly. That decision now seemed

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