Defintion, Causes, Signs and Treatment of Stroke (Apoplexy)

The term “stroke” describes a condition in which the blood supply to part of the brain is suddenly and seriously impaired by a blood clot or a ruptured blood vessel. Stroke occurs more commonly in later life and in people who suffer from high blood pressure or some other circulatory disorder. The effect of a stroke depends on how much, and which part, of the brain is affected. In some cases, the condition can be fatal; however, many people make a complete recovery from a stroke.

Causes of Stroke
  • Weakness in the blood vessels, especially, those that transport blood to the brain.
  • High blood pressure
  • Blood clot in the blood vessels
  • Ruptured blood vessels

Signs and Symptoms of Stroke
  • Problems with speech and swallowing
  • Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding.
  • Loss of power or movement in the limbs
  • Sudden, severe headache
  • Sudden dizziness, trouble walking, loss of balance or coordination and bladder control. Emotional mental state that could be mistaken for drunkenness.
  • Sudden or gradual loss of consciousness
  • Sudden numbness or weakness – especially to only one side of the body
  • Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes.
  • Sudden severe headache with no known cause.

Treatment of Stroke
  • If the casualty is conscious, make her lie down with her head and shoulders slightly raised and supported. Incline her head to the affected side, and place a towel on her shoulder to absorb any dribbling
  • Loose all clothing that might impair the casualty’s breathing.
  • Reassure her
  • Monitor and record vital signs level of response, pulse, and breathing
  • Seek medical help or transport the casualty to the hospital.

Risks Factors of Stroke
  • Atrial  Fibrillation
  • Hypertension
  • Cardiac Disease
  • No exercise
  • Diabetes
  • Smoking
  • Heavy alcohol use

Caution
Do not give the casualty anything to eat or drink because a stroke may make it difficult to swallow.

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