Author ORCID Identifier

Iris Feinberg:

Dawn Aycock:

Document Type


Publication Date



Background: Research suggests that younger adult African American people (age 18-35 years) have more than double the risk of having a stroke than White people. Stroke risk education is lacking for this cohort; there is a dearth of materials that are targeted and focused for young adult African Americans. There is also little research on developing and testing age and culturally appropriate health literate materials that may help this population better understand personal risk factors for stroke. Objective: The aim of this study was to understand factors to guide creating and disseminating plain language health messages about stroke risk awareness among young adult African Americans. Methods: African American participants age 18 years and older completed an online survey (N = 413). Descriptive statistics, one-way analysis of variance, and two-step cluster analyses were used to evaluate stroke risk awareness, perceived risk of stroke, message creation factors, and online health information seeking behavior. Open-ended survey items described modifiable and non-modifiable reasons for perceived risk of stroke. Key Results: Participants reported differences on overall stroke risk factor awareness by perceived risk of stroke was significant (F[2, 409] = 4.91, p = .008) with the very low/low group (M = 1.66, p < .01), showing significantly lower overall stroke risk factor awareness compared to the moderate and high/very high groups. Both respondents who thought their stroke risk was very low/ low and moderate/high/very high commented about family history (54.1% and 45.9%, respectively) as the reason and 88.2% of very low/low commented that they did not have risk factors for stroke because they were young. Cluster analysis indicated the Mostly Clear Preferences cluster was more likely to select mostly/very on positive, informational, and long-term messages and medical authority sources. The largest of three clusters reported medical sources as the highest rated source for both finding and trusting health information (47.2%, n = 195). Conclusion: Young adult African Americans have a scarce understanding of modifiable stroke risk factors; health education materials should focus on positive information messaging that shows a long-term result and is presented by a medical authority. We did not observe any age or sex differences among the data, which suggests different message modalities may not be needed.


Originally published in Feinberg I, Aycock DM, Tighe EL, Detamore D. Outreach for Young Adult African Americans with Risk Factors for Stroke. Health Lit Res Pract. 2024 Jan;8(1):e38-e46. doi: 10.3928/24748307-20240220-01.


Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.