BY OGECHUKWU AGWU
Despite the better control of the risk factors of having stroke, its incidence is increasing due to the aging population. Studies have shown that every year, 15 million people suffer from stroke; 10 million people are survivors leaving the remaining 5 million people as permanently disabled. In Nigeria, the prevalence of stroke is 1-14 per 1000 while the 30 day case fatality rate is as high as 40%.
Stroke imposes a huge burden on the society; it is the first cause of adult physical disability the second cause of mental disability and one of the major causes of depression. It places a strong burden on the family and community with increasing financial costs.
Against the above background, MOLEAC PTE, a singapore companythat develops innovative products to address unmet needs with neurology has partnered with Bolar Pharmaceuticals, a Nigerian Pharmaceutical company that is focused on unique pharmaceutical and natural medicines for conditions where current treatments are inadequate, unavailable or unaffordable to launch NeuroAid, a natural made drug for patients that are recovering from stroke.
Speaking at a press conference recently held in Lagos, Dr. Benjamin Villeneure, the vice president MOLEAC PTE said, “NeuroAid has being positioned for recovery of neurological damages as a first line treatment for support of the natural repair process of neural tissue with long term clinical benefits.”
“The drug consists of a mixture of natural compounds and belongs to a novel class of medicine which is neuro-regenerative and neuro-rehabilatative and which plays a role in the assembly of new circuits of information in the brain to replace the functions lost during a stroke. It supports neurorepair by stimulating the natural processes of neuroplasticity and neurogenesis which develops and last over the long run.”
“It helps patients to recover after stroke allowing patients to get benefits sustainable for full recovery on the long run. NeuroAid is an added on to standard cardiovascular prevention treatment that reduces risk of early cardiovascular events when initiated at post-acute stage. It has a safety profile and can be trusted.”
In the same vein, Pharm. Bolade Soremekun, managing director Bolar Pharmaceuticals Ltd. added that the drug should not be seen as a cure but as part of the treatment to improve the quality of life of a stroke patient.
“NeuroAid should be considered as an add-on to standard treatment to improve the patient mobility, speech, basically to improve the patient life. It is for the benefit of both the neurologist and most especially the patient to help brain stroke recovery.”
“This product is very safe although research has not done to check its safety for children however; some doctors prescribe it to children in low dosage. NeuroAid is a product that has been researched on extensively all over the world and being published in almost all the top medical journals.
Prof K. Wahab associate professor of medicine and consultant Neurologist University of Ilorin/ University of Ilorin Teaching Ilorin who spoke at the conference said that the launching of the drug was timely seeing that stroke is the second leading cause of death in the country and acquired disability.
“1 in 6 people worldwide will have stroke in their lifetime, every 6 seconds stroke kills someone and every other second stroke attacks a person regardless of the age or gender, 17 million people experience a stroke each year and 6 million of them do not survive.”
‘In Nigeria,stroke accounts for up to 4% of hospital admissions, it also accounts for 45% of neurological admissions and 5-17% of medical deaths. These statistics are terrible and so there should be a widespread knowledge of what stroke is and how to combat it.”
Stroke remains a problem globally knowing how to control the risk factor is one major way to stopping the epidemic. According to Wahab, “identifying the risk factors for stroke can go a long way and according to Stroke Investigative Research Educational Network (SIREN), they include; hypertension, diabetes mellitus, family history of CVD, stress etc.”
He also said that there was a need to adopt stroke unit care before the patient gets to the hospital; this he said will reduce the risk of complications, support vital functions and prevent general complications.
Also present at the event were Rita Melifonwu, CEO Stroke Action Nigeria, Dr Aurelio Mendez, consultant neurologist National Institute of Cardiology Mexico, Pharm. Mariela Romero, key accountant manager MOLEAC PTE, Prof. Yomi Ogun, professor of internal medicine/neurology Olabisi Onibanjo University Teaching Hospital and Caroline Soremekun, executive director Bolar Pharmaceuticals Ltd.