Planning a campaign to fight stroke: an educational pilot project in La Spezia, Italy

  • Elisa GiorliEmail author
  • E. Schirinzi
  • R. Baldi
  • A. Mannironi
  • E. Raggio
  • N. Reale
  • C. Gandolfo
  • M. Del Sette
Original Article



Best medical treatments of ischemic stroke are admission to stroke unit, intravenous thrombolysis and, in selected cases, thrombectomy. Time from symptom onset to interventions is the best predictor of clinical outcome. In order to verify the effectiveness of an active education programme of awareness on the knowledge of stroke, we performed a local campaign “on the field”.

Subjects and methods

We selected 101 subjects from the general population who took part in the “stroke awareness campaign” organised by the Italian Association for the fight against stroke (A.L.I.Ce). Mean age was 59 years (50% female; 50% male); 55% of the sample reported a high level of education (> 8 years: high school or university degree). After a short multiple-choice questionnaire, we administered a face-to-face standard educational protocol (15 min). The efficacy of that educational intervention was then verified after a period of 12 months, by telephone interview.


There was improvement both in the definition of stroke (66% vs. 92%, p < .001) and in recognizing symptoms and signs (19% vs. 72%, p < .001). Knowledge of the importance of stroke unit in the acute treatment of stroke did not improve, as it was already high on baseline (92% vs. 97%, p: n.s.). The improvement was evident in particular in younger and higher educated people, without difference in gender. There was no difference based on risk factor profiles of participants.


Our results suggest that a personalised education can improve knowledge on stroke symptoms and signs, independently of gender and personal risk factors. The results should be verified in larger and less selection population.


Awareness Stroke Information campaign Educational project 


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Financial disclosure

No author has a financial relationship with the company who manufactures any product or equipment discussed in this manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Fondazione Società Italiana di Neurologia 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Unit of NeurologySt. Andrea HospitalLa SpeziaItaly
  2. 2.A.L.I.Ce. LiguriaAssociazione Lotta all’Ictus CerebraleGenoaItaly
  3. 3.Unit of NeurologyE.O. Ospedali GallieraGenoaItaly
  4. 4.S.S.D. EpidemiologySt. Andrea HospitalLa SpeziaItaly
  5. 5.Department of Neuroscience, Ophthalmology and GeneticsUniversity of GenoaGenoaItaly

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