Identification of barriers to stroke awareness and risk factor management unique to hispanics

Marina Martinez, Nitin Prabhakar, Kendra Drake, Bruce Coull, Jenny Chong, Leslie Ritter, Chelsea Kidwell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Barriers to risk factor control may differ by race/ethnicity. The goal of this study was to identify barriers to stroke awareness and risk factor management unique to Hispanics as compared to non-Hispanic whites (NHWs). We performed a prospective study of stroke patients from an academic Stroke Centerin Arizona and surveyed members of the general community. Questionnaires included: the Duke Social Support Index (DSSI), the Multidimensional Health Locus of Control (MHLC) Scale, a stroke barriers questionnaire, and a Stroke Awareness Test. Of 145 stroke patients surveyed (72 Hispanic; 73 NHW), Hispanics scored lower on the Stroke Awareness Test compared to NHWs (72.5% vs. 79.1%, p = 0.029). Hispanic stroke patients also reported greater barriers related to medical knowledge, medication adherence, and healthcare access (p < 0.05 for all). Hispanics scored higher on the “powerful others” sub-scale (11.3 vs. 10, p < 0.05) of the MHLC. Of 177 members of the general public surveyed, Hispanics had lower stroke awareness compared to NHWs and tended to have lower awareness than Hispanic stroke patients. These results suggest that Hispanic stroke patients perceive less control over their health, experience more healthcare barriers, and demonstrate lower rates of stroke literacy. Interventions for stroke prevention and education in Hispanics should address these racial/ethnic differences in stroke awareness and barriers to risk factor control.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number23
JournalInternational journal of environmental research and public health
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 22 2015


  • Hispanics
  • Prevention
  • Stroke

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pollution
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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