Stroke is a emergency 911 scenario and a type of brain attack that happens when a blood vessel in the brain is obstructed or bursts unexpectedly. If you suspect a stroke, call 911 immediately, follow instructions, ask where the nearest Stroke Medical Center is and inquire about an estimated time of arrival for the ambulance. Stroke victims only have three hours maximum from the time of the stroke to receive a blood clot busting shot that may reduce the risk of long term injury by one third – providing the individual qualifies for the shot. Every minute counts!
Stroke incidents deprive the brain of oxygen due to blood not getting to the necessary cells and tissue, resulting in impairment. Whether mild and minor or severe and major, neurologists consider three main categories of stroke, based upon diagnostic tests, symptoms and feedback from loved ones about the symptoms they notice about the person who is suspected to have had a stroke.
It’s important to know the signs and treatment options for a Stroke, as follows.
Signs of a Stroke
Signs of a stroke may be subtle or more severe. Signs of a stroke and consequential disabilities may not be recognizable to those affected when the stroke affects the part of the brain that allows for recognition of symptoms. There are a few indications associated with a stroke, including, but, not limited to:
- Numbness or weakness of the face or extremities, perhaps on one side of the body
- Inability or inhibited ability to speak or understand words
- Slurred speech which may lend the impression that the stroke victim is intoxicated
- Difficulty communicating or following questions and answers in conversation
- Confusion, memory loss, lack of good judgment, or inability to make decisions
- Loss of balance and lack of coordination
- Loss of vision or blurry vision, including the appearance of wandering or bumping into walls when walking
- Changes to mood or emotions, such as, an overly defiant attitude or unusual combative behavior (may be managed with medication)
- Difficulty in swallowing
- Personality changes, such as, elevated fear, avoidance of people, not being open to moving or going out
- Rigid movement in extremities, such as, limp arm or difficulty walking
- Headaches—sudden and severe
Stroke Types and Treatment
There are two primary types of strokes, including: Hemorrhagic stroke and Ischemic stroke. There are also the terms TIA or a mini stroke, which refers to a Transient Ischemic Attack. Treatments vary, depending upon the type of stroke and artery affected. Click on the links to learn about treatment options.
Hemorrhagic Stroke – caused by a blood vessel rupture. The hemorrhage or bleeding is most serious because it can damage surrounding tissue, affecting key brain functions.
Ischemic Stroke– A blood clot (“thrombus”) in a vessel in the brain results in havoc, cutting off blood to the brain. This type of stroke occurs when a blood vessel in the brain develops a clot and cuts off the blood supply to the brain. Atherosclerosis is often the culprit in such strokes.
Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA) – This stroke happens due to the interruption of blood flow to the portion of the brain for a short time (15 minutes and under). TIA damage may be cumulative over time, ultimately resulting in possible severe disability. TIA’s have been linked to uncontrolled diabetes, which may be more common in seniors who may seem able to manage daily living skills, but when alone, may forget to take their medications.
Next Visit, Stroke Overview to Learn about a Clot Busting Shot that may reduce long term disability by 1/3, if administered within three hours following the Stroke.
This above mentioned information is not meant to be an attempt to diagnose, augment, treat or replace information you receive from your medical providers. Strokes are serious and an immediate consultation with medical professionals is the only way to properly diagnose and develop an appropriate treatment plan. Of course, researching stroke information may help assist you in making better educated decisions. Your Health Access disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.