Stroke: Signs, Symptoms, and Complications

A stroke happens when a blood artery is blocked or bleeds, interrupting or reducing the blood supply to the brain. When this occurs, the brain lacks oxygen and nutrients, and brain cells begin to die.

Stroke is a vascular disorder of the cerebrospinal fluid. As a result, it affects the blood arteries that supply oxygen to the brain. Without sufficient oxygen to the brain, harm may begin to occur.

This is a situation that requires immediate medical attention. While many strokes are curable, some can be fatal or cause permanent impairment.

Symptoms

If you suspect that you or someone you’re with is experiencing a stroke, pay close attention to when the symptoms began. Certain therapy options are more successful when administered immediately following the onset of a stroke.

Symptoms and signs include the following:

Having difficulty communicating and comprehending what people are saying. You may have disorientation, slurred speech, or difficulties understanding spoken language.

Face, arm, or leg paralysis or numbness. Your face, arm, or leg may experience abrupt numbness, weakness, or paralysis. This frequently affects only one side of the body. At the same time, attempt to raise both arms above your head. If you notice that one of your arms begins to fall, you may be having a stroke. Additionally, when you attempt to smile, one side of your mouth may droop.

Vision problems in one or both eyes. You may experience abrupt blurred or darkened vision in one or both eyes, as well as double vision.

Headache. A strong headache that occurs suddenly and follows by vomiting, dizziness, or altered awareness may signify.

Having difficulty walking. You may trip or fall. Additionally, you may have abrupt dizziness or a loss of coordination.

Causes

Stroke causes by two primary factors: a blocked artery (ischemic stroke) or a blood vessel that leaks or bursts (hemorrhagic stroke). Certain individuals may experience a brief disruption of blood flow to the brain, referred to as a transient ischemic attack (TIA), which does not result in lasting symptoms.

Stroke caused by ischemia

This is the most often occurring form. It occurs when the blood arteries in the brain become restricted or obstructed, resulting in significantly reduced blood flow (ischemia). Blood arteries become blocked or restricted due to fatty deposits accumulating in them or as a result of blood clots or other debris traveling through your bloodstream and lodge in the blood vessels in your brain.

Stroke with hemorrhage

When a blood vessel in the brain leaks or ruptures, hemorrhagic stroke ensues. Brain hemorrhages can occur as a result of a variety of disorders affecting your blood vessels. Several risk factors for hemorrhagic stroke include the following:

  • Uncontrolled hypertension
  • Excessive use of blood thinners (anticoagulants)
  • Bulges at weak points in the walls of your blood vessels (aneurysms)
  • Tragedy (such as a car accident)
  • Protein deposits in blood vessel walls result in vessel wall weakening (cerebral amyloid angiopathy)
  • Ischemic stroke that results in bleeding

A less common cause of brain hemorrhage is the rupture of a tangle of abnormally thin-walled blood arteries (arteriovenous malformation).

Complications

A stroke can occasionally result in temporary or permanent disability, depending on the loss of blood supply to the brain and the area affected. Complications may include the following:

  • Muscle paralysis or inability to move. You may become completely paralyzed on one side of your body or lose control of specific muscles, such as those on one side of your face or arm.
  • Difficulties communicating or swallowing. A stroke may impair muscle control in the mouth and throat, making it difficult to speak, swallow, or eat. Additionally, you may struggle with language skills, such as speaking or interpreting spoken language, reading, or writing.
  • Memory loss or difficulty thinking. Many stroke survivors experience some memory loss. Others may struggle with thinking, reasoning, making decisions, and comprehending abstract topics.
  • Emotional difficulties. Individuals who have suffered a stroke may have a more challenging time controlling their emotions or may develop depression.
  • Pain. Areas damaged by stroke, pain, numbness, or other odd feelings may develop in the body. For instance, if you lose sensation in your left arm due to a stroke, you may acquire an unpleasant tingling sensation in that arm.
  • Changes in behavior and ability to care for oneself. Individuals who have suffered a stroke may become more reclusive. They may require assistance with grooming and daily tasks.

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