When the blood supply to a part of your brain is reduced, brain cells begin to die, leading to brain injury, disability and possibly death.
Stroke is the fourth biggest cause of death in the UK. It’s also the largest cause of disability, as it can lead to:
Strokes are usually treated with medication, although treatment depends on what part of the brain has been affected and what caused it.
The main signs of a stroke can be remembered using the FAST test:
Other stroke symptoms include:
If someone is suspected of having a stroke, the doctor will discuss their symptoms with them and preferably someone who was with them when they experienced their symptoms. They’ll also ask questions about:
They may also carry out:
These tests can help rule out or identify other conditions that may be causing the symptoms.
Other tests to help diagnose and assess a stroke include:
Blood supply in your brain may be reduced during a stroke due to:
A TIA is still a medical emergency because it may be a sign that you’re at risk of a stroke in the future.
You’re more at risk of having a stroke if you have:
Treatment will depend on:
Ischaemic stroke treatment
Haemorrhagic stroke treatment
Rehabilitation can help alleviate long term problems. This can include:
You can help prevent strokes by following a healthy lifestyle, screening for and treating risk factors (such as high cholesterol or blood pressure) and having any TIAs checked and treated.