What is a Stroke

Stroke is the third leading cause of death after cancer and heart disease, but the majority of people survive stroke. In fact, over 85% of people do, and of these, after a very short stay in hospital or rehabilitation, over 80% are discharged home. But the majority will have some disability. Only 25% of stroke survivors recover completely according to Canadian Institutes for Health Information, 2006. While the level of disability varies, most survivors will have to deal with moderate to severe functional and cognitive limitations. It is not enough to increase quantity of life; the challenge now is to improve the quality of life in the community after the medical system has released the survivor from medical institution.

Stroke Survivors Association (SSA) understands the challenges that survivors, carepartners, and family members face; and the rewards that community stroke re-engagement can provide. We encourage you to learn more about stroke and community re-engagement. To assist you we have prepared information that is essential to those who are new to stroke.

Did You Know?

  • 50,000 Canadians have a stroke each year
  • On average, a stroke occurs every 45 seconds and someone dies every 3 minutes
  • Stroke is the 4rd leading cause of death in North America — 20 to 30% of people that have a stroke die
  • About 1 out of every 15 people that die — die of stroke
  • 300,000 Canadian live with the effects of a stroke
  • Stroke is the leading cause of Adult disability — 2/3 of people who have a stroke will struggle with moderate to severe disability
  • 4/5 families will have to deal with stroke at some point in their lifetime
  • 20% of the people who have strokes are under 50
  • Strokes happen at any age, from infancy to the elderly
  • Our youngest member is an Infant! For every 10,000 Canadian children under the age of 19, there are 6.7 strokes
  • Over 2,500 people in Ottawa will have a stroke this year. Over 50,000 in the Ottawa area are affected by stroke
  • Stroke can affect patients physically, mentally, emotionally, or a combination of the three
  • Disability affects 75% of stroke survivors enough to decrease their employability.