The Grapevine

Study Finds ‘Strong’ Link Between Urinary Tract Infection And Stroke

Having a urinary tract infection may increase your risk of having different kinds of stroke. That is according to a new study that asks healthcare providers to check patients for infections due to their significant impact on health. 

The study, published in the journal Stroke, shows that UTI contributes to the development of ischemic stroke, which occurs when blood vessels were blocked in the brain. However, researchers also found links between the infection and other types of stroke. 

The findings come from the analysis of data collected between 2006 and 2013 from community hospitals in New York through the New York State Inpatient Databases and Emergency Department Databases.  

The researchers focused on three types of stroke and various infections, including skin, urinary tract, septicemia, abdominal, and respiratory. Results show that every type of infection could increase the risk of ischemic stroke, but UTI appeared with the strongest link. 

Patients with UTI had more than three times higher risk of having an ischemic stroke within 30 days of infection, the researchers said. But there are other types of stroke that can be triggered by infections. 

The risk of intracerebral hemorrhage was found higher in patients who had UTI, respiratory infections, and septicemia, a blood infection. Respiratory infection also contributed to the risk of subarachnoid hemorrhage.

Intracerebral hemorrhage occurs due to a ruptured blood vessel in the brain, while subarachnoid hemorrhage is a type of stroke that’s triggered by bleeding in the inner lining of the brain.

"Healthcare providers need to be aware that stroke can be triggered by infections," Mandip Dhamoon, senior study author and associate professor of neurology at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City, said in a statement. "Probing into the previous weeks or months of a patient's life before the stroke can sometimes help to illuminate the possible causes of stroke if there was an infection during that time."

The study calls for further research to better understand how infections contribute to the occurrence of different kinds of stroke, Dhamoon added. Future findings may help determine ways to prevent the condition. 

Stroke A study shows that UTI can contribute to the development of different types of stroke. Pixabay