Understanding the Associations of Stroke and COVID-19: Matthew Schindler, MD, PhD


The assistant professor of neurology at the University of Pennsylvania discussed stroke risk among patients with COVID-19 and the need to seek neurological consultation. [WATCH TIME: 3 minutes]

WATCH TIME: 3 minutes

"It may be possible that these different mechanisms are causing these different sorts of symptomatology. But we need to do those careful studies while the patient’s acutely ill because a lot of times we’re understandably focused on the clinical case and tried to go back afterwards to look at what happened. Collecting data at that time is going to be the best way for us to answer those questions."

A retrospective chart analysis looking at differences of neurological consultations between COVID-19 and non-COVID-19 respiratory infections showed remarkably similar results in terms of ultimate neurologic diagnosis, with a single exception. Stroke remained the only diagnosis more common in the COVID-19 population as compared with the non-COVID-19 population (14% vs 9%). Furthermore, neurology was consulted significantly later in the hospital course of COVID-19 (3.1 vs 0.96 days), despite a higher mortality in the other population (30% vs 19%).

The associations between stroke and COVID-19 have been documented before, although results are varied. Some research has identified more significant associations, whereas others have shown mixed results, with less meaningful associations. The investigators, including Matthew Schindler, MD, PhD, concluded that the neurological approach to patients with COVID-19 should be similar to that in patients with other respiratory infections.

Schindler, who presented the data at the 2022 American Academy of Neurology (AAN) Annual Meeting, April 2-7, in Seattle, Washington, sat down with NeurologyLive® to discuss the thoughts behind earlier neurological consultation for more severe cases of COVID-19. The assistant professor of neurology at the University of Pennsylvania also provided insight on what clinicians do and do not know regarding the realistic association between COVID-19 and stroke.

Click here for more coverage of AAN 2022.

1. Emmert B, Gandelman S, Do D, Schindler M. A single center, retrospective analysis of inpatient neurologic consultations of patients infected with SARS-CoV-2. Presented at: 2022 AAN Annual Meeting; April 2-7; Seattle, Washington. Abstract 3171.
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