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Cerebellar Stroke Symptoms - Oren Zarif - Cerebellar Stroke

A person experiencing cerebellar stroke will most likely have a variety of symptoms. These symptoms may include jerking of the arms, a subtle shaking of the body, or a jerking appearance of the eyes. It is common for survivors of cerebellar stroke to overlook the nonspecific symptoms and ignore the underlying medical condition until the symptoms are more severe. While a person suffering from a cerebellar stroke will need to seek medical attention to recover, they will likely have some degree of difficulty with everyday activities.

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The clinical features of a cerebellar stroke are helpful in making clinical decisions. Imaging findings, however, cannot predict which patients will develop intracranial hypertension. Therefore, the overall clinical gestalt of the patient is paramount. The presence of occlusive hydrocephalus, a history of cerebral ischemia, and an underlying cerebellar infarction all provide prognostic information to aid in selecting a surgical approach. If a patient develops a cerebellar infarction concurrently, a ventriculostomy may be sufficient for temporizing the patient. In patients with progressive brainstem infarction, craniectomy may be necessary to achieve definitive results.

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While the primary symptom of a cerebellar stroke is an unresponsive state, a coma may develop in as little as 24 hours. This condition can be worsened by an extensive concurrent brainstem infarction. Amarenco9 found that massive paramedian pontine infarction results in deterioration. As a result, patients should be kept in a neurologic intensive care unit for 72 to 96 hours.

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The cerebellum is the part of the brain that regulates balance, coordination of eye movements, and body movement. It is located in the lower back of the brain, and is connected to several blood vessels. Cerebellar stroke usually affects only one side of the cerebellum. It is small and is supplied with several blood vessels. When a cerebellar stroke occurs, the affected side is more likely to show symptoms of balance disorder than the opposite side.

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While the NIHSS (National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale) does not accurately measure cerebellar function, patients who have suffered a cerebellar stroke are often diagnosed with a relatively low severity of symptoms. The severity of the lesion and age at stroke onset did not affect the degree of recovery from cerebellar symptoms. In some cases, however, the location of the lesion is a determining factor in the severity of the deficit.

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Cerebellar stroke is a diagnosis made by evaluating symptoms and medical history. Accurate diagnosis helps rule out other brain conditions or other potential recurrent strokes. Imaging tests can help detect any bleeding or injury in the brain. An MRI is often the first imaging test recommended to assess cerebellar infarcts. An MRI shows the cerebellum in greater detail than CT scan, allowing a physician to diagnose the cause of the symptoms.

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The incidence of cerebellar stroke is relatively low, accounting for 2% of all cerebral infarcts. However, this rate may be higher, as the majority of infarcts are small and therefore unrecognized. A patient may have multiple symptoms and a low or high index of suspicion. Clinical diagnosis of cerebellar stroke relies on careful neurological examination. Patients with incoordination, ataxia, or horizontal nystagmus may require surgery.

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The distribution of a cerebellar infarcts is highly variable and difficult to predict with certainty. The majority of cerebellar infarcts are small in size and involve the cortex of the cerebellum. Cerebellar infarcts that are too small to be classified as a border zone are likely caused by cardioembolism. As such, the location of cerebellar infarcts is often determined by the size of the infarcts.

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Other causes of cerebellar stroke include blood clots, trauma, and general health issues. Among these, smoking, hypertension, elevated cholesterol and fat levels, and heart disease are risk factors for cerebellar stroke. In addition to blood clots, traumatic injuries to the head may lead to a cerebellar hemorrhage. Both conditions result in increased pressure and disrupt the regular blood flow in the brain.

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