Background: Previous studies on the association between tuberculosis and the risk of developing ischemic stroke have generated inconsistent results. We therefore performed a population-based, propensity score-matched longitudinal follow-up study to investigate whether contracting non-central nervous system (CNS) tuberculosis leads to an increased risk of ischemic stroke. Methods: We used a logistic regression model that includes age, sex, pre-existing comorbidities and socioeconomic status as covariates to compute the propensity score. A total of 5804 persons with at least three ambulatory visits in 2001 with the principal diagnosis of non-CNS tuberculosis were enrolled in the tuberculosis group. The non-tuberculosis group consisted of 5804, propensity score-matched subjects without tuberculosis. The three-year ischemic stroke-free survival rates for these 2 groups were estimated using the Kaplan-Meier method. The stratified Cox proportional hazards regression was used to estimate the effect of tuberculosis on the occurrence of ischemic stroke. Results: During three-year follow-up, 176 subjects in the tuberculosis group (3.0%) and 207 in the non-tuberculosis group (3.6%) had ischemic stroke. The hazard ratio for developing ischemic stroke in the tuberculosis group was 0.92 compared to the non-tuberculosis group (95% confidence interval: 0.73-1.14, P = 0.4299). Conclusions: Non-CNS tuberculosis does not increase the risk of subsequent ischemic stroke.
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