Today’s article will deal with a stroke that happens when a particular part of the brain is deprived of the oxygen it needs in order to function.
This stroke is called Ischemic Stroke.
There are two different acute (or smaller) versions of Ischemic Strokes (Thrombotic and Embolic) which are caused by other factors. But for the purposes of this article, we will only be looking at the harder hitting Ischemic Stroke.
That being said, let’s get started.
What are the signs and symptoms of Ischemic Stoke?
- Drooping in the face
- Sudden downgrade of consciousness
- Field of vision corrupted
- loss of vision
- double vision
- your eyes making uncontrollable movements
- Speech difficulties
- lack of muscular control
- weakness or complete paralysis on one side of the body
Considering that these symptoms could come by themselves, or be a part of something else, a neurological exam, which will more than likely include a CT scan, may be necessary. This exam will determine whether the person is actually suffering from Ischemic Stroke.
What should the neurological exam reveal about the presence of an Ischemic Stroke?
When a neurological exam is necessary, it must cover several criteria. Including:
- Confirmation of the criteria for stroke which would include neurological deficits
- Determining the difference between a stroke and other diseases that carry the same criteria.
- Creating a standard for which the condition of the patient will either improve or decline from.
- Aiding in the diagnosis and determination of the stroke’s severity and finding out what can be done about it.
Where does a neurological exam check in order to evaluate the Ischemic Stroke?
Now that we know that we need a neurological exam, where do they look for signs of Ischemic Stroke?
- Motor functions
- Deep tendon reflexes
- Alertness and consciousness of the patient
- Balance and manner of walking
- Nerves in the brain
I cannot stress this enough:
IF YOU EXPERIENCE ANY OR ALL THESE SYMPTOMS, SEEK MEDICAL ATTENTION IMMEDIATELY!!!
What about the therapies for those who survived an Ischemic Stroke?
- dissolving clots (commonly called Fibrinolytic Therapy)
- medicines like Plavix which prevent platelets from sticking together
- a stent that expands arterial walls to promote blood flow (if dissolving the clot won’t work, this is used. this therapy is called Mechanical Thrombecomy)
What prevention strategies can we use against Ishemic Strokes?
For people with no previous history with this disease, prevention may include::
- Statins (designed to lower your cholesterol)
- an exercise plan
- ceasing of smoking, alcohol consumption and drug use
- antiplatelet medication to stop those platelets from messing with you
For people who do have a history of stroke and for those who have even survived one. prevention is similar to those who do not have a history of strokes with one additional part of therapy
- medication designed to deal with hypertension called Antihypertensive
What can we do to help our chances not to have Ischemic Strokes?
- Blood Pressure, Cholesterol, and Blood Sugar: keep them under control and have it checked often
- Exercise: Remember the old adage: a body in motion tends to stay in motion.
- Diet: healthy eating.
In our next article, we will discuss one of the minor cases of Ischemic Stroke the Thrombotic Stroke.
Take care of your body and it will take care of you.