Stroke Charity warns of increased stroke cases among people of working age

Unhealthy lifestyles were partly to blame for the rise, according to experts, although the growing population and changes to hospital practice also played a part.

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There has been a marked increase in stroke cases among people of working age, so says Stroke Association.

According to the group, in England in 2014 there were 6,221 hospital admissions for men aged 40-54 - a rise of 1,961 on 14 years earlier.

Unhealthy lifestyles were partly to blame for the rise, according to experts, although the growing population and changes to hospital practice also played a part.

They also listed growing obesity levels, sedentary lives and unhealthy diets as things which increases the risks of dangerous blood clots, and in turn strokes.

Based on their findings, experts say strokes should not be considered as a disease of the old.

Analysing national hospital admission data spanning 2000 to 2014, it was found that the majority cases occur in people aged over 65, and though rates are decreasing in this group, this report suggests growing numbers of younger people are at risk.

Trends for people in their 40s and early 50s appeared to be getting worse, while in women aged 40-54, there were an extra 1,075 strokes recorded in 2014, compared with 2000.

Speaking on the trend, Dr Mike Knapton, of the British Heart Foundation charity, said the increase in stroke rates among younger men and women was worrying and needed to be taken seriously.

He also said "these findings also highlight the importance of ensuring your blood pressure and cholesterol are under control, as well as having a health check at the age of 40"

Strokes are caused by blood clots or bleeds to the brain and can lead to long-lasting disability.

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