Can texting diagnose stroke?

14 March 2013

Diagnosing stroke can be difficult but according to a new study, text messages could help to raise the alarm.

Researchers at Henry Ford Hospital claim that difficulty or inability to write a coherent text message could be a "vital" means to diagnose stroke, even when speech difficulties are not apparent.

The discovery was made when scientists observed a 40-year-old man who had recently showed signs of 'dystextis' - incoherent text messaging. The subject did not see that what he had written was incomprehensible and still possessed fluency of speech, reading, writing and comprehension.

Doctors were able to see that the man had suffered an ischemic stroke, which cuts off blood supply to a part of the brain.

Omran Kaskar, a neurologist and lead author of the study, commented: "Besides the time-honored tests we use to determine aphasia in diagnosing stroke, checking for dystextia may well become a vital tool in making such a determination."

Heart problems can also be a warning sign for stroke and those identified as being at risk should take steps to improve their health.

Posted by Edward Bartel

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