Thursday, February 9, 2012

What Is a Stroke? Causes, Symptoms and Preventions

Stroke Victims

A stroke occurs when part of the brain is deprived of blood for too long a time. That part of the brain dies because the brain cannot survive for long without oxygen and nutrients, which are supplied by blood.

A stroke causes permanent brain damage. Sometimes permanently disabling a person. Thus, stroke is one of the most feared disorders, particularly by elderly. Even though a stroke causes permanent brain damage, most people recover. How well they recover varies, depending largely on how severe the stroke was. People may recover fully or be disabled slightly,severely, or anywhere in between.

There are two types of stroke:
• Ischemic Stroke
• Hemorrhagic Stroke

In ischemic stroke, sometimes prevents blood from reaching part of the brain. The most common cause is blockage of an artery.

Causes- When an artery that carries blood to the brain becomes clogged or blocked, an ischemic stroke can occur.

In hemorrhagic stroke, a blood vessel burst. As a result, blood escapes into or around brain tissue.

Causes- When blood vessels of the brain are weak, abnormal, or under unusual pressure, a hemorrhagic stroke can occur.

Certain conditions called risk factors make a person more likely to have a stroke. they include abnormal cholesterol levels, atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), some heart disorders, and heart disorders such as abnormal heart rhythms, heart valve disorders, and heart attacks, high blood pressure, and diabetes. Smoking cigarettes, being physically inactive, being overweight, and drinking large amounts of alcohol also increase the risk of stroke.


Most strokes, whether ischemic or hemorrhagic, cause one or more of the following early symptoms:

• Sudden difficulty moving
• Sudden abnormal sensations (one side of the body)
• Sudden difficulty speaking
• Understanding speeach
• Sudden changes in vision
• Sudden loss of balance and coordination
• Confusion
• Dizzinessi
• Sudden severe headache

Other symptoms may occur early or later. They include difficulty swallowing, difficulty walking, partial loss of hearing, urinary incontinence, and loss of control of bowel movements. Remembering, perceiving, understanding, and learning thins may be difficult. Many people have problems with speech and language. Sometimes immediately after a stroke, an arm may be weak, numb, or paralized and thus be more easily injured .

Modifying- eliminating or controlling-risk factor for stroke can often help prevent strokes from occurring and from recurring.

Changes in lifestyle, such as:
• Exercise
• Eat a healthy, low-fat diet
• Not smoking cigarettes regular
• Limit the amount of salt in diet
• People who are overweight can lose weight
• If alcoholic consumption, drink in moderation
• Regular checkups
Sometimes modifying one risk factor modifies another. Stopping smoking, exercising, and losing weight help lower high blood pressure and high cholesterol levels as well as help control diabetes.

Early treatment may result in less brain damage and a better recovery. Knowing the early symptoms of a stroke is important. Then people can seek treatment right away.

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