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A stroke is a debilitating condition and can leave one disabled for life. So, one should not take stroke lightly. It is essential to get it tackled within the window period of 4.5 hours. Here, Dr. Dipesh Pimpale, Consultant Neurology, Wockhardt Hospital, Mumbai answers some of the frequently asked questions from stroke patients to help us understand the condition in a better way.
What is exactly a stroke?
A stroke is seen when the blood flow to one's brain is hampered. Thus, the brain cells in the immediate area tend to die as they fail to receive the oxygen and nutrients they need to function. Two common types of strokes are ischemic stroke, a blood clot blocks or artery in the brain. And a haemorrhagic stroke is seen when the blood vessel in the brain breaks and bleeds into the brain.
What is the line of treatment for stroke?
The doctor will determine the type of treatment based on the severity of the stroke. If the victim has suffered an ischemic stroke, then he/she will be offered treatment of clot-busting medications, surgery, or interventional neuroradiology. If the victim has suffered a haemorrhagic stroke, then he/she can be given medicine or another option is surgery. Remember, the stroke patient should reach the nearby stroke facility during the window period of 4.5 hours.
Is it possible to return to a normal life after suffering from a stroke?
The extent of recovery varies from person-to-person. The amount of brain damage and the size of the stroke is different in each case. Those who suffer a minor stroke may have only slight impairments like a weak arm or leg. A severe stroke can impact one's ability to read, write, or speak. It can also lead to paralysis. Fortunately, with the help of stroke rehabilitation, the stroke victims will be able to get back on track. You should not ignore the symptoms of stroke like trouble with balance, face drooping, arm weakness, slurring speech. Seek prompt medical attention once you notice these symptoms.
What about the rehabilitation for stroke patients?
Rehabilitation is an important aspect of stroke. It includes speech therapy, physical therapy, and occupational therapy, to help patients to gain their gait, mobility, and speech back. These therapies should be taken as suggested by the doctor to improve the quality of life.
Guide regarding the prognosis of a stroke?
A stroke not only affects the brain but one's entire body. It can lead to lifetime disability as it causes paralysis. It may lead to issues with thinking, awareness, attention, learning, judgment, and memory. A stroke can lead to emotional problems as one may find it challenging to control the emotions or may express inappropriate emotions and tends to get depressed. Thus, timely management of stroke is key to minimizing the consequences of a stroke.
What can be done to reduce the risk of stroke?
To cut down the risk of stroke, check your blood pressure, track your cholesterol level, quit smoking, exercise regularly, and stay stress-free.
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