A stroke is a medical emergency caused by a disruption in blood flow to the brain. It is usually caused by a clot or a break in the blood vessels. When brain cells don’t get enough oxygen, they die. It can cause critical neurological problems or even death.
Identify symptoms of a Stroke
The first step in stroke treatment is to notice the signs. Symptoms of a stroke usually appear quickly and may include:
- Numbness or weakness: It happens on one side of the body mostly. It can happen on the face, arm, leg, or foot.
- Confusion: People often have trouble understanding speech all of a sudden or get confused.
- Speech Problems: People may have trouble speaking or slur their words.
- Problems with vision: This can happen in one or both eyes.
- Trouble walking: You might feel dizzy and lose your balance or coordination.
- Severe Headache; A severe headache that comes on quickly and has no known cause is a warning sign.
Most of the time, these symptoms appear out of the blue. If you or someone close to you has any of these symptoms, you need to see a doctor. When treating a stroke, acting quickly can make a big difference in the prognosis and possible outcomes.
Diagnosing of Stroke
When a person who might have had a stroke goes to the hospital, the medical staff conduct tests to ascertain the problem. These include:
You will be asked about your symptoms and the doctor will examine you.
Blood tests can help detect clots, if your blood sugar is too high or too low, if chemicals in your blood are out of balance, or if you have an infection.
Computerized Tomography (CT) Scan
A CT scan shows a picture of the brain, including any bleeding, tumours, strokes, or other problems.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
An MRI can find damaged brain tissue caused by an ischaemic stroke or a blood vessel bursting in the brain.
This test makes clear pictures of the inside of your neck’s carotid arteries. This test could reveal atherosclerotic plaques, one of the causes of ischaemic strokes.
In a cerebral angiogram, your doctor makes a small cut, usually in your groin, and puts a thin, flexible tube (called a catheter) through it.
An echocardiogram uses sound waves to make pictures clear images of your heart. An echocardiogram can find the source of clots in your heart that may have travelled to your brain and caused your stroke.
Different ways to treat patients
Whether a stroke is ischaemic or haemorrhagic changes how it is treated. The main goal of treatment for ischaemic strokes is to get blood flowing again to the brain. It can be done with medicines that break up the clot that caused the stroke or with procedures that remove the clot physically. When treating an ischaemic stroke, timing is crucial. The sooner the treatment is given, the better the chances it will work.
Haemorrhagic strokes happen when a blood vessel in the brain bursts or an aneurysm forms. For this kind of stroke, the goal of treatment is to stop the bleeding and lower the pressure on the brain. It could mean surgery to fix the damage or medicines to lower blood pressure, stop brain swelling, or stop seizures.
After the initial phase of treatment, rehabilitation is crucial for recovery. Physical, occupational, and speech therapy can all be part of a rehabilitation plan. The patient, their family, and a team of medical professionals, such as physiotherapists, occupational therapists, speech and language therapists, and psychologists, work together on this.
Several leading hospitals are at the forefront of providing excellent stroke treatment, from emergency care to rehabilitation services. Their team of experts is committed to helping people who have had a stroke get better and resume their lives.
Stroke is one of the main causes of death and disability around the world. Recognising the signs of a stroke early, getting a quick diagnosis, and getting the right treatment is crucial for improving outcomes and reducing the effects of this serious condition.