Strokes and Aneurysms
What is a stroke?
A stroke is one of the leading causes of serious, long-term disability. A stroke occurs when a blood vessel in the brain
becomes blocked or bursts, causing brain cells to begin dying from lack of oxygenated blood. When brain cells die during
a stroke, memory and muscle control may be lost.
- At any sign of a stroke, call 9-1-1- immediately. Treatment may be available.
- Stroke may happen to anyone at any time.
- Stroke is a “brain attack”.
- Stroke recovery is a lifelong process.
- There are nearly 7 million stroke survivors in the U.S.
- Family history of stroke increases your chance for stroke.
- Temporary stroke symptoms are called transient ischemic attacks (TIA). They are warning signs prior to an actual stroke and need to be taken seriously.
Types of stroke
There are two types of strokes:
hemorrhagic or ischemic. A hemorrhagic stroke occurs when the brain arteries rupture, while an ischemic stroke occurs when
the blood supply to part of the brain is cut off. Hemorrhagic stroke can either be a weakened blood vessel leak or a brain aneurysm burst.
Hemorrhagic strokes are less common and almost 15 percent of all strokes are hemorrhagic. However, they can be responsible for about 40 percent of stroke deaths. Ischemic strokes account for 87 percent of all strokes and high blood pressure is an important risk factor.
A TIA (transient ischemic attack), when blood flow to part of the brain stops for a short period of time, can copy stroke-like symptoms. These symptoms may appear and disappear, lasting less than 24 hours. TIAs do not normally cause permanent brain damage, but they are a sign that a stroke may happen in the future.
A brain aneurysm is a bulge or ballooning in a blood vessel in the brain. An aneurysm can leak or rupture, causing bleeding into the brain (hemorrhagic stroke). A ruptured aneurysm can become life-threatening and will require quick medical treatment. However, most brain aneurysms don’t rupture, create health problems or cause symptoms.
Act F-A-S-T | Know the Signs
When it comes to strokes, time is brain. This is why it is crucial to recognize the signs of a stroke and get to the nearest hospital for evaluation and treatment as soon as possible. If you experience any of the stroke signs, act F-A-S-T and dial 9-1-1. Use the National Stroke Association’s FAST test to remember warning signs that assesses three specific symptoms of a stroke:
- Facial weakness – can the person smile? Has their mouth or eye drooped?
- Arm weakness – can the person raise both arms?
- Speech problems – can the person speak clearly and understand what you say?
- Time to call 9-1-1
Interesting Stroke Facts
According to the National Stroke Association:
- Each year nearly 800,000 people experience a new or recurrent stroke.
- A stroke happens every 40 seconds.
- troke is the fifth leading cause of death in the U.S.
- Every four minutes someone dies from stroke.
- Up to 80 percent of strokes can be prevented.
- Stroke is the leading cause of adult disability in the U.S.