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Stroke Research and Treatment
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 614925, 6 pages
Clinical Study

Previous Leisure-Time Physical Activity Dose Dependently Decreases Ischemic Stroke Severity

1Department of Medical Pharmacology, Faculty of Medicine, University Lille-North of France, 1 Place Verdun, 59045 Lille, France
2Clinical Investigation Centre, University Lille-North of France, CIC 9301 INSERM-CHRU, 59037 Lille, France
3Neurology Department and Stroke Unit, University Lille-North of France, Lille University Hospital, 59037 Lille, France

Received 11 May 2011; Revised 30 June 2011; Accepted 7 July 2011

Academic Editor: Julie A. Bernhardt

Copyright © 2012 Dominique Deplanque et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


In the present subanalysis of a cross-sectional study showing the favorable effect of prior transient ischemia, leisure-time physical activity, and lipid-lowering drug therapy on stroke severity, we aimed to evaluate whether previous physical activity was dose dependently associated to minor stroke (NIHSS 0–3) and to identify possible underlying factors. Among 362 consecutive patients, less severe stroke was related to weekly exercise duration prior to stroke (no exercise: 36.1%; <2 hours: 49.3%; 2–5 hours: 58.8%; >5 hours: 64.0%; 𝑃 = 0 . 0 0 3 ). Only weak and moderate exercise practices were protective (weak: 50.0%; moderate: 79.3%; heavy: 22.2%; 𝑃 < 0 . 0 0 0 1 ). Such a beneficial effect was observed independently of age and was associated with a trend to a lower frequency of arterial hypertension, alcohol abuse, and a better metabolic profile. Besides other therapeutic approaches, physical activity may be a simple way to decrease cerebral ischemia severity.