Stroke

Stroke

is called acute impairment of blood circulation in the brain, with rapid development of brain function abnormalities. Violation of his blood circulation can lead to death. In stroke, cerebral and / or neurologic symptoms are observed.

The cause of a stroke is a blockage, constriction or rupture of blood vessels that supply the brain with blood. There are stroke ischemic and hemorrhagic.

In ischemic stroke (or cerebral infarction, observed in 75% of cases), the blood stops coming into the brain. Most often this is due to the fact that the artery is blocked by a blood clot or torn off by an atherosclerotic plaque. As a result – the death of brain cells due to lack of oxygen.

Hemorrhagic stroke occurs due to rupture of the cerebral artery and is observed in 20% of cases. Cells of the brain, not getting oxygen, die, to this is added the squeezing of tissues spilled blood.

The types of stroke also include subarachnoid hemorrhage, which is observed in 5% of cases. It can occur spontaneously due to rupture of the arterial aneurysm or craniocerebral trauma. Among the main factors include smoking, alcohol, excessive body weight.

The first mention of the stroke was made by Hippocrates in the 460s BC. In the XVII century, scientist Gallen described the symptoms of a stroke, denoting their terms “apoplexy”, or “blow”.

The likelihood of a stroke grows with age, causing people to fear, or even panic. Only in Russia every year almost half a million people suffer a stroke. Therefore, we will try to dispel the basic myths about this disease.

Stroke is a fateful phenomenon, it is impossible to prevent it, it does not respond to treatment.

Statistics on stroke in the CIS looks disappointing. For example, in Ukraine, 100,000 patients are diagnosed every year. Within a year, half of them die, and the other half are permanently disabled. But why not change the statistics for the better? After all, in most countries of the West in recent decades, both mortality and morbidity have been reduced by half or three times! It is the fault of propaganda of a healthy lifestyle and fashion for it. Yes, and a stroke can be treated and needed. The main thing for this is to get into a specialized hospital with modern equipment in the first three hours. There will be computer and magnetic resonance imaging of the brain. Rapid and accurate diagnosis of the lesion and the nature of the disease will help increase the chances of recovery.

Stroke is a problem for older people, so young people have nothing to fear.

In fact, a stroke can happen to anyone and at any age. Although, of course, the probability increases with age. Men of middle age (40-50 years) have a chance of a stroke 1.5 times higher than their peers. And here subarachnoid hemorrhage in general happens more often with young men at whom the arterial pressure has sharply raised. Therefore, if a headache, vomiting, nausea, increased heart rate, sweating, and reddening of the face occur during stress, sexual intercourse, or even physical stress, then immediately leave all cases and call an ambulance. In this case, the statistics gives good chances – timely competent treatment allows to avoid a lethal outcome of 19 of 20 patients.

The main cause of stroke is arterial hypertension.

Studies have shown that it is this cause, high blood pressure, that is the main for 75-90% of stroke cases. Hypertension generally have a stroke risk of 40% more than other people. The reason for this is the wear and deformation of the thinnest walls of cerebral vessels due to chronic hypertension. Over time, the walls become quite fragile and tear or are deformed and thicken, while the lumen of the vessel narrows. In one case, cerebral hemorrhage will then be called a hemorrhagic stroke, and in another – an ischemic stroke, in the event of a complete closure of the lumen in the vessel and stopping the access of oxygen to the brain region.

Hypertension is more common in women.

In fact, high blood pressure to women is inherent in the same way as for men. Only here the weaker sex is more anxious about their health – doctors only have 3 %% hypertensive men, women with such deviations are twice as large.

The cause of a stroke may be a snoring.

And this is the truth! After all, research has shown that snoring is not just a small nuisance, but also a sleep disorder that increases the risk of a stroke. When snoring oxygen supply to the brain decreases, thereby increasing the risk of blood circulation of this vital organ.

Stroke comes unexpectedly, like a bolt from the blue.

So it does happen, but this is just an exception, emphasizing the rule. Usually the body in one way or another tries to warn in advance about the future trouble. This is manifested in pressure jumps, headaches and even passing violations in the blood circulation of the brain. Only here many do not pay attention to these symptoms, to numbness of limbs and glitches in the work of sight and speech. After all, such attacks usually last for long, up to 15 minutes, without leaving a trace. The doctors are usually treated by the most suspicious patients, turning out to be right in the end. After all, such mild seizures indicate that there is a large-scale risk of a full stroke. If you conduct a timely study, it is likely to be able to detect a developing disease of the cerebral vessels, if timely in this case, begin treatment, then you can avoid future troubles.

Stroke always leads to paralysis.

In the case of a stroke affected by a part of the brain that is responsible for the movement, this is true. Then the muscles will gradually weaken and paralysis will occur. But if the damaged vessel is located in another zone, then there may be other symptoms, ranging from a decrease in sensitivity and speech impairment, ending with precariousness in a campaign with a loss of balance.

The likelihood of a stroke increases with high cholesterol.

This is actually the case, because excess cholesterol is deposited as atherosclerotic plaques on the inner sides of arterial walls. Over time, connective tissue around them grows, calcium deposits occur. As a result – deformation of the vessel, narrowing of the lumen and constant insufficiency in the blood supply of organs, including the brain. If the high cholesterol content occurs in hypertensive patients, then this is fraught with even greater danger. The growth of plaques occurs much faster, they become unstable and can at any moment come off the wall and clog the vessel. This will lead to an end to the access to the brain of oxygen and nutrition.

In the event of paralysis from a stroke a person will remain helpless for life.

First, do not forget about modern methods of treatment, which can be very effective, it is worth considering the possibilities of recovery programs, and secondly, one should not take into account the internal resources of the body. If brain cells are slightly affected, they can even recover, and some functions of dead neurons can be transferred to intact sites.

Even if a person can move independently in case of a stroke, they will not return to him.

In this matter there can be no unambiguousness. The whole point is where the stroke is located. In the left hemisphere of the brain is the center of speech, if this area is damaged, then the person will have to learn to talk, read and write anew, and there are no guarantees of success. If the stroke occurred in the right hemisphere, then the speech will be preserved completely, only other problems will arise.

Stroke makes a person mentally handicapped.

This can actually happen, but this is not the rule. About 25% of all stroke survivors receive vascular dementia or dementia in a few months.First, the patient worsens attention and memory, then slows down thinking, a person begins to be inferior in time and space, and as a result – the complete failure of independent existence. Unfortunately, in case of damage to areas strategically important for mental activity, nothing can be done. Only here often vascular dementia is the result of unnoticed micro-strokes, which eventually destroy the cerebral cortex. Consolation is perhaps the fact that this is already observed at a very old age. However, if it is not your intention to die young, it is better to take care of your blood vessels, then old age senility can be avoided.

Smoking is a factor in the onset of a stroke.

And this statement is far from a myth. After smoking, smoking increases the coagulability of the blood and its viscosity. In addition, this addiction leads to an increase in blood pressure. Smoking increases the development of atherosclerotic plaques in the carotid arteries. All these three factors are impaired to the brain circulation, as a result, heavy smokers have twice the risk of stroke. But those who parted with a bad habit, this risk begins to decline, becoming after 5 years the same as for non-smokers.

Alcohol is one of the factors that trigger a stroke.

We do not take into account examples of unrestrained drunkenness, but alcohol in small doses, 20-25 ml per day in terms of alcohol or a glass of vodka, a glass of wine, can even reduce the risk of this disease, as this leads to a decrease in blood viscosity and increase in the blood level of “correct” cholesterol.

In the eyes, you can predict a stroke.

Surprisingly, this is true. More precisely, not by the eyes themselves, but by the changes in them, by the nature of the damage to the blood vessels. After all, those who are similar to the vessels of the brain structure, so in people with retinal degeneration the probability of stroke is 70%.

Sitting work has nothing to do with stroke.

Scientists have found that sedentary work, especially when a person spends his entire day leaning his head forward at the table, worsens the blood circulation of the brain. However, in this there is nothing final tragic. After all, even a daily half-hour walk in the open air reduces the risk of a stroke. The best solution is generally swimming 30-40 minutes a week or choosing other moderate, but regular physical exercises. With the loads should be cautious, because too intense strength exercises can easily raise blood pressure. So do not bypass the gym – just sometimes measure your pressure level with the doctor.

Hypertensive crisis is dangerous only for chronic hypertensive patients.

A sudden jump in pressure relative to the usual level, or crisis, can be triggered by different reasons. These include stress, overdose of drugs or alcohol, and excessive mental overexertion. The presence of severe headache or nausea after being carried away by the bosses or another brainstorming session, as well as redness of the skin, is a signal to immediately call an ambulance, because otherwise everything can end in cerebral edema or a stroke. It is not necessary and to try to reduce pressure independently – this process should be supervised by the doctor.

Excess weight leads to a stroke.

The risk of stroke increases not so much by weight itself as by the distribution in the body of adipose tissue. Recent studies by Israeli doctors have shown that middle-aged men have a higher risk of dying from stroke with a predominance of visceral obesity. In this case, the main location of fat is the stomach. And this is not surprising, because with this type of obesity in the body, the fat and carbohydrate balance is violated, which means that diabetes and atherosclerosis will develop.

Treatment for a stroke is possible only surgically.

This is only partly true.To save those who suffered from a hemorrhagic stroke and hemorrhage to the brain, it is necessary to remove the clots of the ruptured blood vessel promptly, to remove the hematoma. Sometimes the operation is performed and a low-traumatic method. To do this, a special apparatus is attached to the patient’s head, then under the local anesthesia a skin incision is made 2-3 cm long, a small hole about 1 cm in diameter is drilled in the skull. Through it, exactly in the right place, the tow truck is injected with hematomas. Since there are no painful receptors in the brain, all further actions are absolutely painless and do not require anesthesia.

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