Original Article| Volume 24, ISSUE 8, P1823-1831, August 2015

Prevalence and Profile of Poststroke Subjective Cognitive Complaints


      Subjective cognitive complaints (SCCs) are common after stroke, but detailed information about how SCCs differ between patients with stroke versus stroke-free individuals is not available. We evaluated the prevalence and profile of the 2 SCC components (content and worry) in patients 3 months after stroke versus controls using both a generic and a stroke-specific instrument.


      Using a cross-sectional design, 142 patients were compared to 135 controls (matched at group level on age, sex, and estimate of premorbid intelligence quotient). SCC-content and SCC-worry were assessed using the Cognitive Failures Questionnaire (CFQ) and the Checklist of Cognitive and Emotional Consequences after stroke (CLCE-24). Univariate and multivariate linear (for continuous scores) and logistic (for dichotomous scores) regression analyses were used to explore differences between patients and controls on both instruments.


      Based on the CLCE, patients reported more SCC-content (standardized β = .21, p.001) and SCC-worry (standardized β = .18, p.02) than controls in multivariate analyses. Profiles indicated that stroke was associated in particular with SCC-content on the domains of memory, attention, executive functioning, expressive language, and with attention-related SCC-worry. In contrast, no group differences were found on SCC-content and SCC-worry assessed by the CFQ.


      The prevalence and profile of SCC-content and SCC-worry differ between patients and controls 3 months after stroke. The instrument used may, however, determine prevalence estimates. Stroke-specific inventories that differentiate between SCC-content and SCC-worry are preferable when attempting to determine SCC after stroke.

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