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Stroke

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Stroke

image by: Hellerhoff
     

The message is clear, stroke incidence is increasing, recognition is difficult and unlike heart attacks there is no widely-available treatment. Although, there are some interesting and exciting new treatments that surprisely seem to work real well they are also time dependant.

Why? Stroke management is contingent on the recognition of stroke and time to treatment which needs to optimally occur within 90 minutes and at the most no greater than 3 -4.5 hours after onset.

Unfortunately most people fail to recognize the signs of stroke. One of the big differences between heart attacks and strokes is that heart attacks usually happen when patients are awake whereas strokes usually occur while asleep. As a result optimal treatment is unachievable in most cases because there's usually no reliable way to determine when the stroke happened.

One gets the impression that within the next few years a combination of technological advances and community awareness will start to reduce stroke mortality and morbidity. However, any effective treatment for stroke will also have to find a way to extend the treatment time window now at 3-4.5 hours, for those patients who do not live within a few minutes of a stroke center.

So, what you can do in the meantime. Minimize your risk for stroke by controlling the risk factors of high blood pressure, diabetes and weight, know where the nearest stroke centers are, and raise awareness in your community and among your friends.

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Last Updated : Saturday, November 11, 2017