Objectives/Hypothesis: It has been recognized that chronic rhinosinusitis (CRS) involves intracranial vessels and may be associated with stroke occurrence. However, the detailed epidemiological profile of stroke risk among patients with CRS is still not well understood. Therefore, this study aimed to explore the frequency and risk for stroke among patients with CRS by conducting a large scale population-based cohort study in Taiwan. Methods: All study cohorts were retrieved from the Taiwan Longitudinal Health Insurance Database. This study included 15,846 CRS subjects in the study cohort and 47,538 randomly selected subjects in the comparison cohort. We individually tracked each subject in this study for a 5 year period following their index dates to identify each subject that received a subsequent diagnosis of stroke. Stratified Cox proportional hazards regressions were analyzed to compare the 5 year risk of subsequent stroke following a diagnosis of CRS. Results: The incidence rate of stroke during the 5-year follow-up period was 10.65 (95% CI: 9.93-11.41) per 100 person years and 7.53 (95% CI: 7.18-7.89) per 100 person years for the study and comparison cohort, respectively. The covariate-adjusted hazard ratio (HR) for stroke revealed that that subjects with CRS were more likely than comparison subjects to have a diagnosis of ischemic stroke during the 5-year follow-up period (HR = 1.34, 95% CI = 1.18-1.53). However, there was no significant difference in the risk of subarachnoid hemorrhage (HR = 1.52, 95% CI = 0.94-2.47) or intracerebral hemorrhage (HR = 0.96, 95% CI = 0.71-1.31). Conclusions: Patients with CRS were at higher risk for stroke occurrence during the 5 year follow-up.
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