Skip to main content Accessibility help

Affective Illness After Stroke

  • S. Ebrahim (a1), D. Barer (a2) and F. Nouri (a2)


Mood assessments were made after six months of 149 survivors taken from a register of all patients admitted to hospital with acute stroke. Using a General Health Questionnaire score of 12 or more as a criterion of important affective illness, its prevalence was 23%. There was no difference in risk of affective illness between left and right hemisphere strokes. Affective illness was strongly associated with functional ability, with limb weakness and with longer hospital stay in those with good functional recovery. Only 15% of those with high scores were receiving antidepressant drugs. The general practitioner is in the best position to detect psychiatric illness in stroke survivors; the use of mood rating scales such as the GHQ, in conjunction with clinical assessment may improve detection.


Corresponding author

Department of Clinical Epidemiology and Social Medicine, St George's Hospital Medical School, Cranmer Terrace, London S rV 17 ORE


Hide All
Adams, G. F. & Hurwitz, L. J. (1963) Mental barriers to recovery from strokes. The Lancet, ii, 533537.
American Psychiatric Association (1980) Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (3rd ed.) (DSM-III). Washington DC: APA.
Bridges, K. & Goldberg, D. (1984) Psychiatric illness in in-patients with neurological disorders: patients' views on discussion of emotional problems with neurologists. British Medical Journal, 289, 656658.
Dimond, S. J., Farrington, L. & Johnson, P. (1976) Differing emotional response from left and right hemispheres. Nature, 261, 690692.
Ebrahim, S., Nouri, F. & Barer, D. (1985) Measuring disability after a stroke. Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, 39, 8689.
Feibel, J. H., Berks, S. A. Joynt, R. J. (1979) The unmet needs of stroke survivors. Neurology, 29, 592.
Folsthn, M. F., Folsthn, S. E. & McHugh, P. R. (1975) Mini-Mental State. A practical method for grading the cognitive state of patients for the clinician. Journal of Psychological Research, 12, 189198.
Folsthn, M. Maiberger, R. & McHugh, P. R. (1977) Mood disorder as a specific complication of stroke. Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry, 40, 10181020.
Giainotti, G. (1972) Emotional behaviour and hemispheric side of lesion. Cortex, 8, 4155.
Goldberg, D. P. & Hiluer, V. F. (1979) A scaled version of the General Health Questionnaire. Psycholgical Medicine, 9, 139145.
Lim, L. M. & Ebrahim, S. (1983) Depression after stroke: a hospital treatment survey. Postgraduate MedicalJournal, 59, 489491.
Lipsey, J. R., Robinson, R. G., Pearlson, G. D., Rao, K. & Price, T. R. (1984) Nortriptyline treatment of post-stroke depression: a double blind study. The Lancet, i, 297300.
Lishman, W. (1968) Brain damage in relation to psychiatric disability after head injury. British Journal of Psychiatry, 114, 373410.
Murphy, E. (1982) Social origins of depression in old age. British Journal of Psychiatry, 141, 135142.
Robinson, R. G. & Coyle, J. T. (1980) The differential effect of right versus left hemispheric cerebral infarction on catecholamines and behaviour in the rat. Brain Research, 188, 6378.
Robinson, R. G. & Price, T. R. (1982) Post-stroke depressive disorders: a follow-up study of 103 patients. Stroke, 13, 635641.
Robinson, R. G., Starr, L. B., Kubos, L. & Price, T. R. (1983) A two-year longitudinal study of post-stroke mood disorder findings during the initial evaluation. Stroke, 14, 736741.
Robinson, R. G., Starr, L. B. & Price, T. R. (1984a) A two-year longitudinal study of mood disorder following stroke: prevalence and duration at six months follow-up. British Journal of Psychiatry, 144, 256262.
Robinson, R. G., Kubos, K. L., Starr, L. B., Rao, K. & Price, T. R. (1984b) Mood disorders in stroke patients. Importance of location of lesion. Brain, 107, 8193.
Rosen, S. & Martorano, J. (1965) Clinical application of antidepressant agents in disabled and rehabilitation patients. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 46, 739744.
Royal College of General Practitioners (1974) Morbidity Statistics From General Practice: Studies on Medical and Population Subjects No. 26. London: HMSO.
World Health Organisation (1978) Cerebrovascular Disease: A Clinical and Research Classification. WHO Offset Series No. 43. Geneva: WHO.

Affective Illness After Stroke

  • S. Ebrahim (a1), D. Barer (a2) and F. Nouri (a2)


Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed

Affective Illness After Stroke

  • S. Ebrahim (a1), D. Barer (a2) and F. Nouri (a2)
Submit a response


We encountered an error trying to retrieve eLetters for this article. Please try again or contact Customer Services


Reply to: Submit a response

Your details

Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *