Many people are familiar with what it means to have a stroke – it is the fourth leading cause of death in America, and so has impacted the loved ones of many. When a blood clot breaks free and blocks an artery, or a blood vessel breaks, stopping blood flow to an area of the brain, brain cells in the affected area die. This results in damage to the brain, and is called a stroke, brain attack, cerebrovascular accident (CVA) or ischemic stroke. Sometimes a person will suffer something called a transient ischemic attack (TIA), which is a “mini-stroke” that cuts off the supply of blood to the brain but does not cause lasting brain damage; although there is not permanent damage, there is a high risk of suffering a repeat TIA or a full stroke if not properly treated. Signs that a stroke is happening or has just occurred include sudden weakness or numbness of an arm, leg, or face – commonly just one side, sudden difficulty speaking, sudden difficulty walking or loss of balance, trouble seeing through one or both eyes, or sudden onset severe headache.
In support of Stroke Awareness Month, we invite you to learn more about stroke: how to minimize the risk of one occurring, and how to recognize one happening so that medical help can be called for as soon as possible. Check in to our blog or facebook throughout the month of May for more information on stroke and how to participate in awareness campaigns in your area.
For those living in Minnesota who have suffered a stroke, or know a loved one who has, a great resource is the Minnesota Stroke Association, which has partnered with the Brain injury Association of Minnesota. They provide more detailed information on prevention, dealing with damage caused by stroke, caregiving, as well as finding support groups in Minnesota for stroke survivors. You can visit the website at www.strokemn.org, or call 763-553-0088.
If you or a loved one have suffered a stroke and are seeking treatment for neurological side effects like weakness, aphasia, or other symptoms of damage to the brain, neurologists at Noran Neurological Clinic work closely with the Stroke Team at Abbott Northwestern Hospital to evaluate and treat stroke patients. Please contact Noran Neurological Clinic at 612-879-1500 to schedule an appointment with a neurologist experienced in the diagnosis and management of stroke.