Health > Mens >Stroke
A stroke is sometimes called a "brain attack." It can injure the brain like a heart attack can injure the heart. A person who has a stroke may suffer little or no brain damage and disability, especially if the stroke is treated promptly. But, if not treated promptly, a stroke can lead to severe brain damage and disability, or even death.
Types of strokes
There are two main types of stroke.
An ischaemic stroke is the more common cause of stroke and occurs when a blood clot blocks an artery serving the brain.
A haemorrhagic stroke is caused when a blood vessel in or around the brain bursts causing a bleed or haemorrhage.
What are the symptoms?
Numbness, weakness, or paralysis on one side of the body
Slurred speech or difficulty finding words or understanding speech
Blurred vision or loss of vision
Dizziness, confusion, unsteadiness, or severe headache
Risk factors such as smoking, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, and atrial fibrillation will be addressed and treated.
Drugs, such as aspirin, may be prescribed to make blood less sticky and less likely to clot. Rehabilitation may involve physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and counselling.
An operation to remove blood clot from arteries in the neck may be performed.
A stroke is a single, damaging attack, but the conditions or risk factors that lead to a stroke, such as high blood pressure, smoking, heart disease, and diabetes develop over many years. The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), part of the National Institutes of Health, has developed a worksheet to help you estimate your stroke risk. For a copy of Brain Basics: Preventing Stroke, contact the NINDS information office listed below.
You can reduce your stroke risk by taking the following steps:
Control your blood pressure. Have your blood pressure checked often, and, if it is high, follow your doctor's advice on how to lower it. Treating high blood pressure reduces the risk for both stroke and heart disease.
Stop smoking. Cigarette smoking is linked to increased risk for stroke. Research shows that the risk of stroke for people who have quit smoking for 2-5 years is lower than people who still smoke.
Exercise regularly. Researchers think that exercise may make the heart stronger and improve circulation. It also helps control weight. Being overweight increases the chance of high blood pressure, atherosclerosis, heart disease, and adult-onset (type 2) diabetes. Physical activities like brisk walking, cycling, swimming, and yard work lower the risk of both stroke and heart disease. Talk with your doctor before starting a vigorous exercise program.
Eat a healthy diet. Choose, prepare, and eat foods low in fats, saturated fatty acids, and cholesterol. Eat a variety of fruits and vegetables.
Control your diabetes. If untreated, diabetes can damage the blood vessels throughout the body and lead to atherosclerosis.