On World Stroke Day, let’s create awareness on how to recognise symptoms of a stroke, risk factors and treatment options.
Strokes are leading causes of death and permanent disability worldwide.
In a stroke, a part of the brain doesn’t receive sufficient blood or oxygen and as result functioning of the corresponding body part gets affected.
Strokes are of 3 types, Transient Ischemic attack, Hemorrhagic Stroke and Ischemic Stroke.
In a Transient ischemic stroke, a blood clot temporarily stops the blood flow from reaching the brain,
In an Ischemic stroke, a blood clot stops blood flow to the brain. This can be due to a clot travelling from another part of the body to the brain.
In a hemorrhagic stroke, a blood vessel spills or ruptures, causing a leak.
Symptoms of a stroke are usually all neurological, affecting speech, movement and balance.
Usual Stroke symptoms are :
- Slurry Speech, inability to speak coherent words and sentences
- Droopy face, with a droop towards one side
- Inability to lift one arm or sudden weakness in one limb
- Sudden, severe headache
- Loss of balance
- Loss of consciousness
- Dizziness, Vertigo, with or without nausea
- Confusion, inability in understanding speech are often symptoms too.
Are there any factors, which increase risk of stroke ?
- Several life style factors contribute to increasing risk of stroke
- Obesity or excess weight
- Hypertension or High Blood pressure
- History of Heart Disease
- Sleep Apnea
- Sedentary lifestyle, lack of exercise and adequate physical activity
What to do when you spot a stroke victim ?
A Stroke can be completely reversible if treated well in time. The time window for treatment is usually not more than a couple of hours from onset of symptoms.
Time is of essence for a stroke victim as many as 32000 cells die every minute of delay, leading to irrepairable damage with every minute of delay.
A CT scan or an MRI are first diagnostic tests and based on whether it is a clot that can be surgically removed or needs to be dissolved, or a leak or rupture of blood vessels, a neurologist or a neurosurgeon take over.
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