Dr. Ravinder Jeet Singh, says, most stroke (nearly 80 to 85 %) are due to clot in the arteries which supplies blood to the brain (ischemic stroke) while the other variety is due to rupture of blood vessel resulting in blood to come out of circulation into brain (intracerebral hemorrhage, about 10 %) or around it (subarachnoid hemorrhage, about 5%).
It is the most common cause of chronic disability and one of the top three causes of global deaths. Survivors are often left with motor and mental disabilities. However, early and timely recognition can help patients to have a complete recovery.
Do you know that the risk of stroke increases after 55 years of age? But more than 80% of stroke reduces if one controls the following:
- High Blood Pressure
- High Cholesterol
- Lack of Physical Exercise
- Heart disease
How to recognise the stroke?
Get alarmed if one gets:
- Sudden onset of weakness in any limb (arms, face or leg) - In case you experience numbness or weakness especially on one side of your body, or you are stumbling, can indicate that you are having a stroke.
- Early dropping of face
- Inability to speak or slurred speech - Difficulty in understanding speech or slur of words can indicate the possibility of stroke.
This can be easily understood by remembering the mnemonic FAST (Face, Arm, Speech test). If one detects any of these symptoms especially when sudden in onset (or patient wakes up from sleep with these symptoms) should alert regarding stroke.
What to do after recognising a stroke?
Once any of the above symptoms are recognised, the patient must be rushed to nearest medical centre. Any patient who has suffered from the new stroke are scanned with CT or MRI of the brain, which helps to diagnose and plan treatments options. Clot-busting drugs can be given up to 4.5 hours. Some patients have big clots (diagnosed by vessel scans) which can be pulled using special stents or aspiration devices. Patient with hemorrhagic stroke may also benefit from urgent care like blood pressure control which improves patient outcome.
Care after Stroke
After the initial treatment and stabilisation, rehabilitation with appropriate and intensive physiotherapy, speech therapy, and swallowing techniques under supervision are important for long-term recovery.