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Stroke: mechanisms, stratification and implementation
  1. Nick S Ward
  1. Correspondence to Dr Nick S Ward, The National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, UCL Institute of Neurology, Queen Square, London WC1N 3BG, UK; n.ward{at}ucl.ac.uk

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This issue of JNNP has been given over to considering current directions in stroke research. It was not so long ago that neurologists were unsure whether to embrace the specialty of stroke as one of their own. Whichever way you look at it though, stroke is a disease that starts in the vascular system but leads to focal brain damage with behavioural consequences. There is enough to keep neurologists, neurosurgeons and indeed psychiatrists involved. The incidence of stroke has decreased over recent decades1 ,2 largely driven by improvements in the management of risk factors but stroke is still, and perhaps always will be, a major healthcare burden. The question for researchers now is where will further improvements come from? The work published here illustrates some of the diverse avenues being explored to come up with the answers.

One approach is to focus on what patients consider important but which is not addressed by current clinical services.3 For example, problems with memory and concentration in the weeks …

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