Stroke

Below you will find more information about Stroke from Medigest. If you believe that you are suffering from any of the symptoms of Stroke it is important that you obtain an accurate diagnosis from a medical professional to ensure that you obtain the correct medication or treatment for your condition. There are medical conditions that carry similar symptoms associated with Stroke and therefore the information provided by Medigest is offered as a guideline only and should never be used in preference to seeking professional medical advice. The information relating to Stroke comes from a third party source and Medigest will not be held liable for any inaccuracies relating to the information shown.

Definition

The quick developing failure of brain functions because of a disturbance in the blood vessels that provide blood to the brain. This may happen because of ischemia which is caused by thrombosis or embolism or because of hemorrhage. Medically, stroke can be referred to as ictus which means "to strike" in Latin.

Diagnosis

Neurological tests CT scans MRI scans Doppler ultrasound Arteriography

Treatment

Assessing the symptoms early is very helpful in treating stroke. Accepted treatments of stroke are operation such as carotis endarterectomy and angioplasty; medications such as anti-platelet drugs, anticoagulants; hospital care and rehabilitation.

Symptoms and Signs

The FAST test is used to verify symptoms of stroke which is widely used by pre-hospital care professionals in UK. FAST means: Face - to see if there is anything "dropping" Arm - patient holds his arms out for 30 seconds to see if one of the arms moves down slowly Speech - to check for slurring Test all three - all three must be tested If three areas in the brain affected contain the corticospinal tract, spinothalamic tract and dorsal column symptoms may include numbness, muscle weakness in the face and decrease in sensory. Usually only one side of the body is affected with stroke. If the brainstem is affected symptoms include change in smell, hearing, taste or vision; eyelid is drooping, ocular muscles weakness, reduced reflexes and sensation, problems in balancing, change in breathing and heart rate, lack of ability to turn head to one side and tongue weakness.

Causes

Stroke is sometimes referred to as brain attack. For ischemic stroke it is caused by very little blood in the brain. For hemorrhagic stroke it is the total opposite wherein there is too much blood within the skull.

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