Brunei stroke survey hits 1,000 participants

National 1 minute, 40 seconds

BRUNEI-MUARA

THE Brunei Neuroscience Stroke and Rehabilitation Centre’s (BNSRC) continues to make encouraging progress on the country’s first national study on stroke and multiple sclerosis, recording its 1,000th participant on December 17. The two-year study’s target is to reach 5,000 people by the end of 2015.

According to Masliza Liussin, research assistant for the Brunei Epidemiology Study of Stroke and Multiple Sclerosis (BEST), the milestone was recorded with a family visited in Kg Mulaut on Tuesday evening. Teams of researchers under Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) have been making the rounds around villages in the Brunei-Muara District since early October collecting data that will feed into the study, while at the same time building the country’s first stroke database.

The researchers ask participants of 18 years and above a series of simple questions such as history of illness and conduct easy physical routines to record observable signs and symptoms.

Health information such as blood pressure is also taken. Asked if the study remained on track, Masliza said, “Because we have four teams, we are becoming quicker in collecting the information. If this rate continues we could even finish it within a year but... we did not reach the targeted numbers for each mukim. Once we’ve covered all the selected villages in our list, we will have to go back from the first mukim (to reach our desired target).”

The study has already completed rounds in 15 villages, beginning with Kg Parit and ending with Kg Beribi. This weekend, they will finish in Mukim Sengkurong before breaking for the holidays. The study is scheduled to resume in early January.

“It all depends on the participants. We are hoping more and more people know about this project and want to join this study,” said Masliza.

The BEST study is poised to be a watershed in research and knowledge of stroke and multiple sclerosis in Southeast Asia, as medical experts attempt to corroborate incidents of stroke in Brunei among younger people with statistical data from the population.

The Brunei Times