A stroke is a medical emergency. It occurs when a blood vessel in brain ruptures or, more commonly, becomes blocked. Without treatment, brain cells quickly die. This can lead to serious disability or death.stroke symptoms
Signs of a stroke may include sudden:
Stroke: time = brain damage
When seeking treatment for a stroke, every second counts. With a lack of oxygen, brain cells begin to die within minutes. There are blood clot-breaking drugs that prevent brain damage, but they must be taken within 3 hours of onset of symptoms. Once brain tissue dies, parts of body controlled by this area cannot function properly. This makes stroke number one cause of long-term disability.stroke diagnosis
When a person with symptoms of a stroke is admitted to emergency room, doctors check to see if stroke was caused by a blood clot (ischemic stroke) or bleeding (hemorrhagic stroke). Different types are treated differently. A CT scan can help doctors understand if symptoms are caused by blockage in a blood vessel or by bleeding. Additional tests may be needed to find out where blood clot or bleeding is located in brain.
1. Ischemic stroke
This is most common type of stroke. Almost 9 out of 10 fall into this category. It happens when a blood clot blocks a blood vessel in brain. A clot could form in this place or get from blood to other parts of body.
2. Hemorrhagic stroke
Hemorrhagic strokes are less common, but more often fatal. They occur when a weakened blood vessel in brain ruptures. The result is a brain hemorrhage that is difficult to stop.
3. "Little Stroke" (TIA)
Transient ischemic attacks, often referred to as "mini-strokes," are more like sexual intercourse, in which blood flow is temporarily blocked in one part of brain, causing stroke-like symptoms. When blood flows again, symptoms stop. But you don't know if it's a stroke or a TIA, and a TIA is a warning sign. If you've had a TIA, it's important to watch for possibility of a stroke.cause of stroke
Atherosclerosis is a common cause of stroke. Plaque, made up of fat, cholesterol, and other substances, can build up in arteries, reducing space for blood flow. A blood clot can get stuck in this narrow space and cause an ischemic stroke. Atherosclerosis also contributes to formation of blood clots. A hemorrhagic stroke occurs when uncontrolled high blood pressure causes an artery to rupture.
1. Risk factors: chronic diseases
Your risk of stroke increases if you:
Taking steps to control these conditions can reduce your risk.
2. Risk factors: bad behavior; these habits make you more likely to have a stroke:
3. Risk Factors: Diet
Eating too much fat and cholesterol can lead to atherosclerotic narrowing. Too much salt can cause high blood pressure. Too many calories can lead to obesity. Eating more fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and fish can help reduce your risk of stroke.
4. Risk Factors Out of Your Control
These include aging and a family history of stroke. Gender also plays a role: men are more likely to have a stroke, and women are more likely to die from it. In addition, blacks are at greater risk than other races.Stroke: emergency care
In ischemic stroke, focus in emergency care is on drugs to restore blood flow. A clot-breaking drug dissolves clot well, reducing chance of long-term damage if taken quickly. Hemorrhagic stroke is more difficult to control. Treatment usually includes control of high blood pressure, bleeding, and brain swelling.
Stroke: long-term damage
Whether a stroke causes long-term damage depends on how severe it is and how quickly treatment helps brain. The type of damage depends on where stroke occurred. Stroke survivors may have one or more problems, such as numbness in an arm or leg, trouble walking, seeing, swallowing, speaking, or understanding. These problems may be permanent, but many people regain some or even most of their abilities.
Rehabilitation after a stroke: speech therapist
Rehabilitation is key to recovery process after a stroke. It helps people regain lost skills and learn to adapt to irreparable damage. The goal is to help regain as much independence as possible. Speech/language therapy is a must for people who have difficulty speaking.
Stroke rehabilitation training
Muscle weakness and balance problems are very common after a stroke. It can affect walking and other daily activities. Physical therapy is an effective way to restore strength, balance and coordination. For fine motor skills such as using a knife and fork, writing, and buttoning a shirt, occupational therapy is helpful.stroke prevention
1. lifestyle changes; people who have had a stroke or TIA can take steps to prevent a recurrence of a stroke:
2. Stroke Prevention: Medications
For people at high risk of stroke, doctors often recommend medication to reduce that risk. Antiplatelet drugs, including aspirin, prevent platelets from sticking together and forming blood clots. Some people may need anticoagulant medications such as warfarin. If you have high blood pressure or high cholesterol, your doctor may prescribe medication to lower your blood pressure or cholesterol, and recommend lifestyle changes.
3. Stroke Prevention: Surgery
Some strokes are caused by narrowing of carotid arteries, blood vessels on both sides of neck that carry blood to brain. People who have had a mild stroke or TIA due to this problem may benefit from a procedure called carotid endarterectomy. This procedure removes plaque from lining of carotid artery and may prevent recurrent strokes. Your doctor can help you weigh risks and benefits.
4. Stroke prevention: balloons and stents
In some cases, doctors can treat a blocked carotid artery without major surgery. A procedure called angioplasty involves temporarily inserting a catheter into an artery and inflating a small balloon to expand area where plaque has gone down. A metal tube called a stent can be inserted and left in place to keep artery open.