Stroke more deadly for women and poses a greater burden: Heart & Stroke Report

Heart and Stroke Foundation News Release: Stroke disrupts women’s lives, changes their roles and threatens their independence.

Women are disproportionately affected by stroke throughout their lives: More women die of stroke than men, more women are living with the effects of stroke, they have worse outcomes and they face more challenges as they recover. Yet, they are confronted with challenges across the health system and often are not adequately supported according to the Heart & Stroke 2018 Stroke Report.

According to the 2018 Stroke Report women face a greater stroke burden and lack support:

  • Stroke is more deadly for women: One-third more women die of stroke than men in Canada.
  • More women are also living with stroke. Of the approximately 405,000 people in Canada living with the effects of stroke, 214,000 are women.
  • Women are 60% less likely to regain their independence, they make fewer functional gains and they have worse quality of life.
  • Less than half of stroke patients who participate in rehabilitation are women.
  • Women are less likely to return home after stroke and twice as many women as men go to long-term care.
  • There is a higher risk of marriage break-up post stroke if it is the woman who has the stroke.

The way forward

Differences between women’s and men’s brain health are just starting to be understood. Opportunities exist, and will only increase, to better support brain health for all women from awareness and prevention, through care, treatment and recovery.

Heart & Stroke is committed to supporting women’s heart and brain health including through a powerful new awareness campaign: #TimeToSeeRed. Learn more at

The report is available at

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Publishing this article in no way serves as an endorsement from NWO Regional Stroke Network. The NWO Regional Stroke Network does not verify the veracity of information in this item and any views expressed are of the author(s) alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of NWO Regional Stroke Network​