By: Kyle Colona. The best weapon to limit the brain damage that strokes cause is for doctors and hospitals to recognize the symptoms quickly.
Ischemic strokes are caused by an obstruction inside a blood vessel that leads to the brain. These obstructions are typically caused by fatty deposits lining the vessel walls – a condition called atherosclerosis. Ischemic stroke accounts for 87% of all stroke cases, according to the American Stroke Association. The best weapon to limit the brain damage a stroke causes is for the doctors and hospital staff to quickly recognize the signs and symptoms of stroke.
Clotting factors in Ischemic Strokes
Atherosclerosis can cause two types of obstructions: cerebral thrombosis or a cerebral embolism. A thrombosis usually develops where the clog has formed in the blood vessel. An embolism is a blood clot that forms elsewhere in the circulatory system. These clots usually occur in the heart and/or large arteries in the upper chest and neck.
In these cases, a piece of the embolism tears loose and travels into the bloodstream, into the blood vessels that provide blood and oxygen to the brain. These vessels are too narrow for the clot to pass through which culminates in a stroke. Atrial fibrillation, or an irregular heartbeat, can also cause embolisms to form in the heart.
Silent strokes and mini-strokes
A silent stroke is clinically known as a cerebral infarction (SCI). This is a brain injury caused by clots that interrupt blood supply to the brain. An SCI is a warning sign for a future stroke that could cause progressive brain damage.
A “transient ischemic attack” (TIA) or a mini-stroke is another warning sign of a grander stroke that is on the way. The key word here is transient as these incidents are temporary and usually do not cause permanent brain injury. But a TIA is a warning sign that should not be ignored.
Sudden signs and symptoms of stroke
Most strokes are not preceded by a SCI or a TIA. So it is critically important to recognize the sudden signs and symptoms of a stroke. These stroke alerts include face drooping, arm weakness and speech difficulty and visual disturbances.
Other stroke symptoms include sudden numbness of the face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body; sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding; sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes; difficulty walking, dizziness or loss of balance and coordination; and sudden severe headache with no known cause.
Time lost is brain lost
The best weapon in defending against a stroke is to recognize the warning signs and to act fast, immediately dial 911 and get to an emergency room where medication or other treatments can head off the damage to the brain. Remember: time lost is brain lost.
Lawsuits from Stroke Medical Malpractice
When a doctor or a hospital fails to recognize the signs and symptoms of a stroke and sends a patient home or fails to treat the stroke, or prevent the stroke from occurring, you may have a strong case of stroke medical malpractice.
The founders of StrokeLaw.com, Cory Rosenbaum & Robert Fader, are New York attorneys with decades of experience representing victims of medical malpractice and stroke victims and their families. They are available for free consultations.
Source: Stroke Association