What is a stroke?
Like all of our organs, the brain needs oxygen and nutrients from the blood. It is like a chain reaction. Therefore, it is only necessary to stop the supply of blood to the brain, as its cells begin to die. This is called a stroke. It can lead to brain injury, disability, or even death.
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Nerve cells of the brain control all the functions of our body. This includes limb movement, metabolism, respiration, blood circulation, vision, hearing and other signals coming from the senses. In simple words – this is our whole life. By the way, each of the halves of the brain controls the functioning of the opposite part of the body. That is, a stroke on the left will lead to a loss of function of the right side of the body and vice versa.
If you stop supplying blood to the brain, then its cells begin to die
The Greek physician Hippocrates was the first to describe a stroke more than two millennia ago. Then this disease was called "apoplexy", which in Greek means "stricken with violence." So they called the cessation of blood circulation, because a person suddenly developed paralysis and a change in well-being. Then, of course, people knew little about the anatomy of the brain, and therefore they did not find the causes of the stroke or the methods of its treatment.
Only in the middle of the XVII century, the Swiss pathologist Jacob Wepfer found that patients who died from apoplexy had bleeding in the brain. He investigated – blockage of one of the blood vessels of the brain can lead to apoplexy.
What types of stroke exist?
Ischemic – blood supply stops due to a blood clot, which seems to be "stuck" in a vessel. This type is found in 85% of cases. Hemorrhagic – hemorrhage in the brain. That is, a condition where a weakened blood vessel that supplies blood to the brain bursts. There is also a comorbid condition called transient ischemic attack. In this case, the blood supply to the brain is interrupted for a while. This condition can last from several minutes to a day. But it means that in the future a person can get a full stroke.
Symptoms of a Stroke
A catastrophic brain accident, also called a stroke, develops quite quickly: from several minutes to several hours or days. In the acute period, immediately after a vascular catastrophe, a condition develops that can be called cerebral shock. It is characterized by impaired movement and weakened muscle tone, as well as impaired speech. The duration of this period is usually up to three weeks. At this time, cerebral edema may develop and increase.
The first signs of a stroke are easy to remember thanks to the abbreviation FAST: Each letter translated from English means:
F – face
A – arm (hand)
S – speech
T is time.
Sometimes there are other signs that can mark a stroke:
– complete paralysis of 1 side of the body;
– difficulties in understanding what others are saying;
– problems with balance and coordination;
– difficulty swallowing – dysphagia;
– sudden and very severe headache
– loss of consciousness.
First aid for stroke
And now for the most important thing – a person with a stroke, who will receive medical care for four and a half hours, is more likely to return to a full life.
If you notice at least one of the manifestations of a stroke, especially after an episode of high blood pressure, immediately call for emergency help. The sooner the patient is provided with professional help, the more chances he has of avoiding serious complications.
At the first symptoms, ask the person to do three things:
– smile – with a stroke, the smile will be crooked, that is, the corner of the lips on one side is directed down, not up;
– make a simple sentence – for example: "There are many clouds in the sky." Often with a stroke, the pronunciation is impaired;
– raise both hands – if they rise differently, there may be a stroke.
The treatment depends on the type of stroke, and on what part of the brain was affected and what led to it. Strokes are usually treated with medication. This includes drugs: to prevent and dissolve blood clots, lower blood pressure and lower cholesterol.
Surgery may be needed to treat cerebral edema and reduce the risk of further bleeding.
After a long treatment usually comes another important stage – rehabilitation.
Yuri Flomin, neurologist “In order to return to independence from outside care and a full life, the vast majority of patients with persistent post-stroke disorders need rehabilitation. Rehabilitation consists not of injections or droppers, but from classes with a physical therapist, occupational therapist and speech therapist, the purpose of which is to restore impaired functions and reduce the need for assistance ”
Doctors say it’s worth monitoring your blood pressure. Ideally, it should be 120 to 80. If it already exceeds 140, the risk of stroke doubles. Therefore, you should consult a doctor.
According to doctors, in order to avoid the disease, first of all, you need to quit smoking, not to abuse alcohol, not to eat fatty foods and exercise more. But such diseases as diabetes mellitus, arterial hypertension, dyslipidemia can also lead to a stroke. About 90% of strokes are associated with these factors.
And finally – a healthy lifestyle saves from almost a hundred ailments. If you moderate exercise, eat high-quality and healthy food, do not abuse alcohol and cigarettes, health can be extended for years.
Stroke / Infographics 24 channels
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