Busting the myths around stroke

11 May, 2021
Busting the myths around stroke

A Pacific language video series by the Auckland University of Technology is highlighting key facts around stroke, in an attempt to bust the myths around this neurological disease.

Stroke is a disease of the brain which is usually caused by a sudden disruption of blood supply to the brain, or sometimes by bleeding. It is a leading cause of long-term disability and death worldwide, yet it is largely preventable.

Every year, 10,000 people experience stroke in Aotearoa, and it is our third biggest killer, with 1 in 10 deaths caused by this disease.

Professor Feigin, Director of the National Institute for Stroke and Applied Neurosciences at AUT says Pacific communities are at particularly higher risk.

“More than 60 per cent of Pacific people affected are younger than 65 years, so this also tells us that stroke is not just a disease of the elderly,” says Professor Feigin.

“However, we know that almost 90 per cent of strokes can be attributed to a few behavioural and lifestyle risk factors that can be modified or controlled, such as high blood pressure, physical inactivity, consuming less salt and changing food habits, and smoking.”

The nine-episode video series encourages the use of the free, easy-to-use Stroke Riskometer™ mobile app developed by Professor Valery Feigin and his team to assess an individual’s risk of stroke in the next five or 10 years and what they can do to reduce the risk.

The Stroke Riskometer™ app has also been endorsed by the World Stroke Organisation, the World Heart Foundation, the World Federation of Neurology, and the European Stroke Organisation.

“The app can also give you an indication of your risk of heart attack, dementia, and diabetes and is available for download on the Google Play and Apple App stores, so I encourage you to download it now, and do your part to lower the devastating statistics around stroke,” says Professor Feigin.

AUT Assistant Vice-Chancellor Pacific Advancement and South Campus Walter Fraser says that given the statistics most families in Aotearoa and in the Pacific will know someone who has been impacted by stroke.

“If we can do our part to raise awareness of this serious disease in our Pacific communities, we could help save lives.”

The first video in the series, to mark Rotuma Language Week, was published this week. Narrated in Rotuman (with English subtitles), this video looks at what a stroke is, the different types of stroke, and what individuals can do to reduce their risks.

Release dates

To watch each video in the 2022 AUT Pacific Language Videos: ‘Busting the myths around stroke’ as it is launched, follow the ‘Pacific at AUT’ Facebook page or watch on YouTube. The AUT Pacific Language Weeks project is supported by the Pacific Media Network.

  • Rotuman Language Week: Sunday 9 May – Saturday 15 May 2021
  • Kiribati Language Week: Sunday 11 July – Saturday 17 July 2021
  • Cook Islands Language Week: Sunday 01 August – Saturday 07 August 2021
  • Tonga Language Week: Sunday 5 September – Saturday 11 September 2021
  • Tuvalu Language Week: Sunday 26 September – Saturday 02 October 2021
  • Fijian Language Week: Sunday 3 October – Saturday 9 October 2021
  • Niue Language Week: Sunday 17 October – Saturday 23 October 2021
  • Tokelau Language Week: Sunday 24 October – Saturday 30 October 2021

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