A stroke, the term used to describe a brain attack, occurs when the brain experiences an interruption in blood supply. Without the oxygen in this blood, nerve cells in the part of the brain affected by the stroke are unable to work and die within minutes. When nerve cells are unable to function, the body parts they control cannot function, either. Stroke is the United States’ third leading cause of death and a leading cause of long-term disability.
If you suddenly experience any of these symptoms, take immediate action!
- Numbness or weakness of the face, arm, or leg – especially on one side of the body.
- Confusion, trouble understanding, or trouble speaking.
- Trouble seeing.
- Dizziness, trouble walking, or loss of balance or coordination.
- Severe headache with no known cause.
Call 911 and check the time. Make note of what time the symptoms occurred, as you’ll be asked about it later.
Usually, stroke is caused by a blocked carotid artery, the most important arteries that lead to the brain. These arteries may be blocked as a result of fatty plaque (atherosclerosis) or because of a blood clot. Another common cause of stroke is a ruptured, or broken, blood vessel leading to the brain.
Living a heart-healthy lifestyle is the best way to prevent a stroke caused by clogged arteries.
- Eat plenty of fruit, vegetables, whole grains, and low-fat protein like nuts and fish
- Commit to regular physical exercise
- Keep diabetes controlled and be conscious of your weight
- Stop smoking
- 3D Echo
- Cardiac Catheterization
- Carotid Angiography
- Electrocardiograms (EKG, ECG)
- Lung and Oxygen Tests
- Peripheral Vascular Studies