Strokes by loginhar1


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									                Strokes – Prevention, Symptoms And Stroke Treatments

      Most people think of a stroke as something that only happens to older people
and those that have additional major health problems. Everyone is at risk of a
debilitating stroke, and only by understanding the causes, symptoms and
treatments can we hope to prevent them.

      Strokes     are   a    disease    that    does    no    discriminating.   Click to find more information about Strokes.

                                    The Types of Strokes

      There are two major categories of strokes and these are then broken down
into additional minor categories.

      The major type of stroke is called Ischemic, claiming eighty-five percent of
all strokes that occur and most commonly occur in the elderly community.

      This type occurs when a brain blood vessel is blocked by excessive buildup
of plaque in the walls of the arteries or because of a blood clot.

      Ischemic stroking can occur as embolic and thrombotic.

      Thrombotic strokes take place deep inside the brain and are caused by
damaged or infected cerebral arteries blocked by plaque build up, blocked blood
vessels, sickle cell anemia, atherosclerosis or other medical conditions.

      The symptoms for thrombotic come on gradually.

      When pieces of blood clots break off this may cause an embolic stroke.

      These clots may also be caused by other fragments floating through the
blood vessels such as air bubbles, fat or cancer cells.

      As opposed to the thrombotic type of stroke, this type occurs away from the
brain. Due to irregular flowing blood, people suffering from atrial fibrillation or
irregular heart beating may be at a higher risk for stroke.

      There are medications that can help lower the possibility of this occurring
for those people.

      The second major stroke type are hemorrhagic strokes. These are caused
by brain artery ruptures and leakage.

      Even though they occur less frequently than Ischemic strokes, they can
cause more deaths because of the speed of the hemorrhaging. The causes for this

type of stroke are typically head trauma; weakness in blood vessel areas and severe
uncontrolled high blood pressure.

      The symptom patients will experience with this type is a feeling of severe
head pressure. Hemorrhagic strokes are divided into two sub-categories,
subarachnoid and intracerebral.

      If a near surface artery of the brain ruptures and blood fills the area between
the skull and the brain, this is considered a subarachnoid hemorrhage.

      The main symptom is a severe, sudden onset headache often accompanied
by nausea.The victim of this type of stroke may fall into unconsciousness very
quickly and death can occur suddenly because of the increase in brain pressure.

      Anyone of any age may be affected by this type aneurism.

      An intracerebral hemorrhage occurs when a weakened or inflamed blood
vessel deep in the brain ruptures and spills blood on the brain tissues surrounding
the area.

      This will cause damage to the brain area in which it is occurring and severe
pressure will be felt in the head. Because of the spilling blood, surrounding tissues
are damaged because of the lack of blood to those areas.

      This type of cerebral aneurysm is most commonly caused by uncontrolled
high blood pressure. It is often fatal within minutes, the victim can fall down
unconscious and quickly passes.

      There are “mini strokes” called transient ischemic attacks, commonly called
TIAs, where blood flow is decreased to areas of the brain temporarily. These do
not cause any permanent damage or lasting effects and can last sometimes up to
five minutes.

      During the time of the attack, you may feel numbness on one side of your
body, a severe headache, blurred vision and balance problems.

      The blood clots then just as suddenly as they occur, dissolve.

      Even though these attacks do not cause permanent damage, they are signals
that there may be a narrowing of the blood vessels and further problems are

      Emergency medical attention should be sought immediately. If you
experience these symptoms it can be an indication that a more serious stroke may
occur at any time.

                                   Stroke Treatments

      If you or anyone around you shows any stroke symptoms, call 911
immediately, seconds can make all the difference in the world between life, death
and debilitation.

      At the emergency room, they will need to determine the type of stroke the
you are suffering from and appropriate treatment should be started within three
hours from the onset of the attack. Usually you will be kept in the hospital
overnight or longer depending on the severity of your stroke.

      A CT scan must first be done to determine the cause of the stroke. If a blood
clot is the culprit, there are clot-dissolving drugs that can break up the clot,
therefore reinstating blood flow to the surrounding areas.

      This medication is only helpful within the first three hours from the
beginning of the stroke.

      If the cause is bleeding, this drug cannot be used because it would promote
additional bleeding making the problem worse.

                              Stroke Prevention Strategies

      Prevention is the best course of action. If you have medical conditions that
may be precursors to a stroke consult your doctor as blood thinners such as
Pradaxa or Coumadin can help prevent blood clots.

      Also, for conditions less severe or for the general community, often a baby
aspirin is recommended.

      If you have high blood pressure, you need to work to bring it under control
with either medications, weight loss or alternative remedies.

      If a clogged blood vessel is discovered before damage is done, skilled
professionals may be able to find the vessel, open it and break up the plaque
clogging it or remove it.

      For hemorrhagic patients, surgeons can remove the draining blood and make
repairs to the blood vessels.

                                How To Recover After A Stroke

      Following a stroke, there are several treatments that may be necessary. In
order to return to full or nearly full function and to prevent the possibility of future
strokes, long-term treatment will be very helpful.

      How much time is required for recovery depends on the person and the
severity of the stroke. Some of the treatments required may be speech therapy,
physical therapy and occupational therapy.

      Remaining as active as possible will help reduce the recovery time and
speed rehabilitation.

      Often, repetition of tasks and communication strategies are necessary
depending on the extent of the damaging effect on your speech and motor control.

      If you have a severe stroke, often you may have no awareness of where you
are and judgment making abilities are lost; therefore, a safe, secure environment is

      Additionally you may also have bowel and bladder control problems. In this
case, often adult day care, a nursing home or in-home care can be beneficial for at
least a short time until their normal functioning returns, if it returns.

      Counseling may also be required for the family of the patient to help
understand what has happened, what to expect and what they can do to help the
stroke sufferer.

      Sometimes time and patience is all it takes. Remember to treat the sufferer
with respect and love, regardless of their abilities or lack of abilities.

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