In the United States, every forty seconds someone has a stroke. And every four minutes someone dies from a stroke. As startling as this can be, eighty percent of strokes are preventable. Knowing the warning signs and preventative measures can help to determine the outcome.

The one-factor people can depend on for the best chance of success during a stroke is TIME. To understand more about stroke care, speak with a heart doctor in Lafayette, LA, to learn more about strokes 101. The more information you have, especially from a cardiologist specialist, the better care you can give your heart.

There are three types of strokes a person could experience. Depending on the type of stroke someone has is what determines their treatment and recovery. Without quick treatment, some strokes can cause permanent damage or death. Understanding and identifying the different types of strokes will give you an advantage in learning what sets them apart from each other. This may help to protect you from cardiovascular problems.

Ischemic Stroke Causes, Symptoms, & Treatments

  • When the vessels that carry blood to the brain are blocked by a clot, it causes an interruption in the blood flow leading to an ischemic stroke.
  • There are two major types of ischemic stroke: thrombotic and embolic. Thrombotic is when a blood clot forms in an artery leading to the brain. Embolic begins with a clot forming usually in the heart or neck breaks loose and travels to the brain.
  • Ischemic stroke is the most common stroke. It affects about eighty-seven percent of all cases.
  • A patient may experience numbness or weakness on one side of the body or face, have trouble speaking, and have difficulty with their vision or balance.
  • If a person experiences an ischemic stroke, an intravenous tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) medication must be administered within 4 1/2 hours to be lifesaving. The earlier the treatment is administered, the better the outcome.

Hemorrhagic Stroke Causes, Symptoms, and Treatments

  • When weak blood vessels burst and bleed into or around the brain, it can lead to a hemorrhagic stroke.
  • It may cause the sudden onset of headaches or head pains.
  • It is less common than Ischemic stroke therefore accounts for about fifteen percent of stroke cases.
  • Most often, it ends in death.
  • There are two types of hemorrhagic stroke: intracerebral hemorrhage and subarachnoid hemorrhage. An intracerebral hemorrhage is when weak blood vessels break inside the brain. Subarachnoid hemorrhage is when weak blood vessels break on the surface of the brain.
  • The treatment is dependent on the volume and location of the bleeding.
  • Surgery can be performed to seal off or repair bleeding vessels to reduce the risk of rupture.

Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA) Causes, Symptoms, and Treatments

  • This is also known as a mini-stroke or a warning stroke.
  • It occurs when there is a temporary interruption of blood flow to the brain.
  • TIA causes stroke-like symptoms but is considered a warning sign that you are in danger of having a major stroke.
  • The symptoms include body or facial paralysis, slurred speech, and possible vision loss.
  • TIA usually resolves on its own with no permanent damage, but it is still crucial to seek immediate medical attention when one strikes.
  • Doctors sometimes treat suspected TIA as a stroke and administer intravenous tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) medication.

Stroke symptoms can come on suddenly, so timing is of the essence. Every second counts. What you do in those critical moments can save your life or the life of someone you love. It is important to act quickly and call 911 immediately.

You should also tell the 911 dispatcher that you think you, or your loved one, is having a stroke. This will help the paramedics to provide fast transport and coordinate the handoff to the hospital which will consult with a heart doctor.

The Key to Spotting a Stroke is B.E. F.A.S.T

  • Balance. Suddenly having trouble with balance and coordination.
  • Eyes. Blurred, double, or total loss of vision can happen in one or both eyes.
  • Face. One side of the face might droop.
  • Arms. Have the person raise both arms to see if one drifts down.
  • Speech. If a person has slurred speech, unable to speak, or hard to understand, see if they can repeat a simple sentence.
  • Time. If any of these symptoms are present, call 911 immediately because timing is everything.

Other stroke symptoms may include sudden confusion, numbness of the face, arms, or legs, and severe headache. If you think you or a loved one is having a stroke, call 911. Leading a healthy lifestyle can reduce the risk of a stroke or heart attack down the line. Implementing healthy changes and habits into your routine can lower your chances of heart disease.

Read also: Tips to Getting and Staying Heart Healthy.

Stroke Preventions

  • Quit smoking and using tobacco products. Nicotine and carbon monoxide causes damage to your cardiovascular system which increases the risk of having a stroke.
  • Start moving and get active. Aim for at least twenty minutes a day of physical activity.
  • Eat healthier. Reduce trans-fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol in your diet.
  • Maintain a healthy weight. If you are overweight, losing five or ten pounds can drastically decrease the chances of having a stroke.

If you have a family history of heart problems, contact CT Cardio today. Dr. Corwin A. Thomas is a cardiologist specialist in Lafayette, LA who understands how vital a quick response and accurate diagnosis is following a stroke.

To schedule an appointment for an assessment with Dr. Corwin A. Thomas, call 337-234-3163. He is the heart doctor in Lafayette, LA who can address heart issues such as high blood pressure, diabetes, undiagnosed arrhythmias, and much more. Remember to B.E. F.A.S.T. Nothing beats a healthy heart!


About Stroke

CDC: Stroke

Stroke Health Center

Ischemic vs. Hemorrhagic Stroke: What’s the Difference

Neuroscience Blog

B.E. F.A.S.T. to spot a stroke