Sunday, April 26, 2009

Basic Information about Stroke

This article writtten by Diana Rodriguez and medically reviewed by Pat F. Bass III, MD, MPH caught my interest. It tells you all about strokes. So read on guys...

A person has a stroke when blood fails to reach brain cells due to a blood clot or bleeding in the brain. The symptoms of a stroke often aren't as clear as those of some other health conditions, so when one occurs, it can be hard to understand exactly what is happening and difficult to figure out what to do. Because emergency care is so essential to avoiding long-term damage and death from stroke, understanding the warning signs and assessing your own stroke risk can make a huge difference in the outcome.

A stroke may seem like something that only happens to other people — and the thinking is usually that those people are older, in ill health, and also have heart disease. But in reality, stroke can affect many different kinds of people and have a range of effects on their health, life, and physical and mental abilities.

Stroke: The 411
Simply put, a stroke is what happens when blood can't reach the brain. This can happen for two main reasons: a blood clot or other blockage in an artery keeps blood from reaching the brain, causing an stroke; or a blood vessel bursts, causing a hemorrhagic stroke. (Another name that you may hear for stroke is cerebrovascular accident, or CVA.) When blood, and the crucial nutrients and oxygen it carries, can't reach the brain, brain cells can quickly die, leaving permanent damage.

About 700,000 Americans have strokes each year, and 150,000 of them will die as a result. There are approximately 5.7 million stroke survivors in the United States today, many of whom suffered permanent disability caused by their stroke.

Although strokes are the third most frequent cause of death in the United States, the good news is that nearly 80 percent of strokes can be prevented if people make lifestyle choices that help them maintain good health.

2 Smart Readers SAID::

Phivos Nicolaides said...

Interesting and valuable information.

Lauren Eyles said...

Thanks for educating people about the signs of stroke. It's so important to seek medical attention early.

Where a person's stroke is caused by a clot, early treatment can make a big difference to their long-term health.

You might be interested in a video that we posted today re: a trial that is making clot-busting treatment available to people in rural areas of Australia. It includes an interview with a stroke researcher and neurologist, Dr Chris Levi and a young stroke survivor.

Best regards,
Lauren Eyles
Hunter Medical Research Institute

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