Hospital admissions of acute cerebrovascular diseases during and after the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic: a state-wide experience from Austria.

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We investigated hospital admission rates for the entire spectrum of acute cerebrovascular diseases and of recanalization treatments for ischaemic stroke (IS) in the Austrian federal state of Styria during and also after the first coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) wave. We retrospectively identified all patients with transient ischaemic attack (TIA), IS and non-traumatic intracranial haemorrhage (ICH; including intracerebral, subdural and subarachnoid bleeding types) admitted to one of the 11 public hospitals in Styria (covering > 95% of inhospital cerebrovascular events in this region). Information was extracted from the electronic medical documentation network connecting all public Styrian hospitals. We analysed two periods of interest: (1) three peak months of the first COVID-19 wave (March-May 2020), and (2) three recovery months thereafter (June-August 2020), compared to respective periods 4 years prior (2016-2019) using Poisson regression. In the three peak months of the first COVID-19 wave, there was an overall decline in hospital admissions for acute cerebrovascular diseases (RR = 0.83, 95% CI 0.78-0.89, p 

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Authors: Thomas Gattringer, Simon Fandler-Höfler, Markus Kneihsl, Edith Hofer, Wolfgang Köle, Reinhold Schmidt, Karl-Heinz Tscheliessnigg, Almut-Michaela Frank, Christian Enzinger