Stroke – Do’s & Don’ts
“Stroke is an emergency that cannot be ignored. It happens due to sudden occlusion or rupture of blood flow to the brain” says Dr Sathish Kumar, Senior Consultant – Neuro Physician & Stroke Specialist at Gleneagles Global Health City, Chennai. There are 2 types of stroke: Ischemic stroke & Haemorrhagic stroke. Ischemic stroke is caused due to blockage of blood vessels affecting the flow of blood & oxygen to the brain. A haemorrhagic stroke occurs when a blood vessel ruptures. This puts pressure on the brain and causes loss of blood to the surrounding areas.
The main symptoms of stroke can be explained through the acronym ‘FAST’ – Facial drooping, Arm weakness, Speech difficulty, Timely identification & management. Time is critical when it comes to stroke management; ‘time lost is brain lost’ when it comes to stroke. The blockage of blood flow caused due to stroke results in the death of 1.9 million nerve cells (neurons) every minute. Treatment of stroke should be initiated within the first 4.5 hours as this timeframe is crucial.
Caregivers, friends, and family members should not waste time by wrongly assuming that the symptoms will improve by itself in some time or by showing the patient to a family physician first. Once a patient is detected with stroke, he/she should be rushed to a nearby comprehensive stroke centre. Gleneagles Global Health City, Chennai is equipped with a comprehensive stroke centre that includes all necessary facilities and a specialized team of Stroke Neurologist, Stroke Nurse, Emergency Physician, Neurosurgeon, and Neuro Interventionist.