50% of UAE Stroke Victims under 45


Fraser Clarke

Someone has a stroke in the United Arab Emirates every hour, with half of these individuals being under the age of 45 it’s been revealed.

Between 8,000 and 10,000 people have a stroke each year in the Emirates, and this statistic only looks like rising. Experts examining the issue have highlighted a range of lifestyle related factors; with the country’s sedentary lifestyle, high rates of obesity, diabetes and smoking all playing a major role.

This is most evident in the average age of stroke patients in Emirates. Worldwide figures show that 80% of stroke victims are over the age of 65 - however in the UAE half of patients are 20 years younger than that benchmark.

Dr Suhail Al Rukn, head of Rashid Hospital’s Stroke Unit, highlighted just how concerning the figures are to the Khaleej Times.

He said: “For the UAE, this is an alarming statistic and calls for urgent lifestyle changes and the need for an increase in awareness.

“18 to 20% of the population are obese, 20% of population are diabetics. Moreover, high salt consumption is a major issue. The average amount of salt needed on a daily basis is two grams, however, the average amount of salt people in the UAE consume per day is 15 grams, which is way above the required limit.

“It is essential for people to be aware of risk factors, to conduct yearly health screenings, and those with one or more risk factors can opt for the stroke risk calculator test, which tabulates the likelihood of a person having a stroke in the next ten years.”

Despite a drop in the oil price the UAE remains an extremely popular location for expats seeking a better life overseas. Generous tax-free salaries, modern facilities and a luxurious standard of living make the country ideal for those seeking a change from the NHS.

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