This article provides an update on the epidemiology and prevention of a first stroke. Risk factor modification plays a large role in stroke prevention. Strategies for early intervention, particularly for hypertension, are critical for reducing stroke morbidity and mortality.
Because of the new criteria for hypertension, more people are now classified as hypertensive and can benefit from lifestyle or medical management. Direct oral anticoagulants have made it easier to safely treat patients with atrial fibrillation and are now considered first-line therapy for patients with an additional stroke risk factor.
Primary prevention of stroke is essential for maintaining brain health throughout the life span. Adherence to a healthy lifestyle and routine screening for stroke risk factors can promote healthy, stroke-free aging.