Prevalence and predictors of post-stroke cognitive impairment among stroke survivors in Uganda

Martin N. Kaddumukasa, Mark Kaddumukasa, Elly Katabira, Nelson Sewankambo, Lillian D. Namujju, Larry B. Goldstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Background: Little is known about the characteristics and determinants of post-stroke cognitive impairment in residents of low- and middle-income countries. The objective of this study was to determine the frequencies, patterns, and risk factors for cognitive impairment in a cross-sectional study of consecutive stroke patients cared for at Uganda’s Mulago Hospital, located in sub-Saharan Africa. Methods: 131 patients were enrolled a minimum of 3-months after hospital admission for stroke. A questionnaire, clinical examination findings, and laboratory test results were used to collect demographic information and data on vascular risk factors and clinical characteristics. Independent predictor variables associated with cognitive impairment were ascertained. Stroke impairments, disability, and handicap were assessed using the National Institute of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS), Barthel Index (BI), and modified Rankin scale (mRS), respectively. The Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) was used to assess participants’ cognitive function. Stepwise multiple logistic regression was used to identify variables independently associated with cognitive impairment. Results: The overall mean MoCA score was 11.7-points (range 0.0–28.0-points) for 128 patients with available data of whom 66.4% were categorized as cognitively impaired (MoCA < 19-points). Increasing age (OR 1.04, 95% CI 1.00-1.07; p = 0.026), low level of education (OR 3.23, 95% CI 1.25–8.33; p = 0.016), functional handicap (mRS 3–5; OR 1.84, 95% CI 1.28–2.63; p < 0.001) and high LDL cholesterol (OR 2.74, 95% CI 1.14–6.56; p = 0.024) were independently associated with cognitive impairment. Conclusions: Our findings highlight the high burden and need for awareness of cognitive impairment in post stroke populations in the sub-Saharan region and serve to emphasize the importance of detailed cognitive assessment as part of routine clinical evaluation of patients who have had a stroke.

Original languageEnglish
Article number166
JournalBMC Neurology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023, The Author(s).


  • Cognitive impairment
  • Dementia
  • Montreal Cognitive Assessment
  • Stroke
  • Sub-Saharan Africa

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology


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