If you get to the hospital within 3 hours of the first symptoms of an
Seek emergency care immediately if a stroke is suspected. Stroke symptoms include: Sudden numbness, weakness or paralysis and drooping of the face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body. Suddenly blurred or decreased vision in one or both eyes.
Staff in the emergency department will administer acute stroke medications to try to stop a stroke while it is happening. Ischemic stroke, the most common type of stroke, is treated with the 'clot-busting' drug known as tPA.
The typical length of a hospital stay after a stroke is five to seven days. During this time, the stroke care team will evaluate the effects of the stroke, which will determine the rehabilitation plan.
The longer a stroke goes untreated, the more damage can be done — possibly permanently — to the brain. “If you suspect you or someone you're with is having a stroke, don't hesitate to call 911,” Dr. Humbert says. “It could save a life.”
Most stroke survivors are able to return home and resume many of the activities they did before the stroke. Leaving the hospital may seem scary at first because so many things may have changed. The hospital staff can help prepare you to go home or to another setting that can better meet your needs.
Your doctor checks how aware you are of what's happening and how well you see, speak, and move. You might also get some blood tests. Within 25 minutes. You get a CT scan to make an image of your brain so doctors can tell what kind of stroke you're having.
Sudden numbness or weakness in the face, arm, or leg, especially on one side of the body. Sudden confusion, trouble speaking, or difficulty understanding speech. Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes. Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance, or lack of coordination.
Computed tomography (CT) scan.
A CT scan of the head is usually one of the first tests used for a stroke. A CT scan can show bleeding in the brain or damage to brain cells.
To treat an ischemic stroke, doctors must quickly restore blood flow to the brain. This may be done with: Emergency IV medication. Therapy with drugs that can break up a clot has to be given within 4.5 hours from when symptoms first started if given intravenously.
Seek medical attention immediately. Many people experiencing a TIA don't seek medical attention right away—often because the symptoms may seem minor or because the person believes they will go away. That's dangerous, Streib said. At the time symptoms occur, a TIA and a stroke are difficult to tell apart.
If you suspect you or someone else is experiencing the symptoms of a stroke, dial 911 immediately. Don't drive to the hospital or let someone drive you—medical personnel in an ambulance can begin this lifesaving treatment on the way to the emergency room. A stroke is a life-threatening emergency.
During the first few days after your stroke, you might be very tired and need to recover from the initial event. Meanwhile, your team will identify the type of stroke, where it occurred, the type and amount of damage, and the effects. They may perform more tests and blood work.
Yes, you can have a stroke and not know it. A stroke's effects can be undetectable if the stroke is small or if the tissue damaged does not serve a critical function. Evidence of the stroke would show on a CT scan or an MRI of the brain, but it might not produce symptoms.
Research shows that the brain possesses an extraordinary ability to heal itself after stroke. This ability, known as neuroplasticity, is why many stroke survivors go on to make astonishing recoveries. However, this healing process cannot happen on its own.
If you get to the hospital within 3 hours of the first symptoms of an ischemic stroke, you may get a type of medicine called a thrombolytic (a “clot-busting” drug) to break up blood clots. Tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) is a thrombolytic. tPA improves the chances of recovering from a stroke.
In addition to the classic stroke symptoms associated with the FAST acronym, around 7-65% of people undergoing a stroke will experience some form of a headache. People describe a stroke-related headache as a very severe headache that comes on within seconds or minutes.
Diagnosis and Tests
The doctor will do some simple quick checks to test your vision, muscle strength, and ability to think and speak. Diagnostic testing consists of either a computed tomogram (CT) or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan of the brain and carotid arteries to determine the possible cause of the TIA.
Weakness or numbness of the face, arm or leg, usually on one side of the body. Trouble speaking or understanding. Problems with vision, such as dimness or loss of vision in one or both eyes. Dizziness or problems with balance or coordination.
You will likely have a head CT scan or brain MRI. A stroke may show changes on these tests, but TIAs will not.
A stroke is a serious, life-threatening medical condition that happens when the blood supply to part of the brain is cut off. Strokes are a medical emergency and urgent treatment is essential. The sooner a person receives treatment for a stroke, the less damage to the brain is likely to occur.
One of the most common stroke mimics is a seizure, which researchers believe account for as many as 20% of all stroke mimics. Other common stroke mimics include migraines, syncope, sepsis, brain tumor and metabolic derangement (low sodium or low blood sugar).