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  • Writer's pictureOren Zarif

How to Prevent a Brain Stroke in Children - Oren Zarif - Brain Stroke


If you suspect your child might have a brain stroke, call 911 immediately. Although certain conditions can put children at risk for stroke, many cases have no known cause. It is important to note the time when a symptom first appears. If a child has drooping face, one arm may be weak or drift downward when both arms are lifted. These symptoms may be the first signs of a stroke. A medical professional can order a CT scan or MRI to determine the extent of the damage.

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A stroke occurs when a part of the brain loses blood supply. This can result in an injured part of the body not functioning properly. During a stroke, the affected person must immediately call 9-1-1 for help and be treated immediately. Within three to four and a half hours, a clot-busting drug can restore blood flow to the affected area. However, the treatment may be lengthy, and if the clot isn't completely removed, the patient may need a second stroke within a few years.

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Once the stroke has occurred, the victim may experience some physical symptoms that can be attributed to the type of brainstem affected. Some symptoms include vertigo, balance, and inability to respond to basic commands. In addition to the physical impairments, many people suffer from a mental state of confusion. A stroke also affects a person's emotional state, and the symptoms vary with the type of stroke. For example, a left-brain injury will cause weakness on the right side of the body.

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Some of the physical symptoms of a stroke include speech difficulties, drooping of one eye, difficulty lifting one arm, or a decreased level of consciousness. Early detection is key to preventing a stroke and restoring full function. A stroke can be caused by several factors, including genetics and family history. For this reason, it is important to receive early treatment. While it is not uncommon for someone to recover from a stroke, it is important to recognize the symptoms as soon as possible.

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Emergency care professionals evaluate and stabilize the patient. Neurologists and interventional radiologists may recommend tPA or clot retrieval. Patients who are candidates for tPA are often stabilized in the emergency department, while those who are not candidates may be transferred to a hospitalist. Rehabilitation physicians, physical therapists, and occupational therapists will often be involved after the acute event. After the stroke has healed, primary care providers will take care of the patient's long-term care.

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Although neuronal loss estimates are not definitive, they are robust. Variable inputs alter estimates by three fold. A low value of six hours results in a rate of 3.2 million neurons per minute. A high value of 18 hours results in a rate of 1.1 million neurons per minute. However, these estimates only apply to patients with large vessel supratentorial ischemic stroke. When stroke is caused by a clot in a carotid artery, speech and movement are impaired.

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Left brain strokes occur when blood supply to the left side of the brain is cut off. The left side of the brain controls the right side of the body, as well as the ability to speak and use language. A person suffering from a left brain stroke will experience ischemic symptoms as the blood supply to that side of the brain stops. Other types of stroke are hemorrhagic, which occurs due to a ruptured blood vessel. The result is that blood pools in the brain, reducing blood flow and putting additional pressure on the affected area.

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A comprehensive rehabilitation program will follow a patient's diagnosis. The goal of this therapy is to restore function and compensate for permanent loss. Although less than 10% of stroke patients are able to function without assistance, many others can return home with appropriate therapy. An interdisciplinary team of medical experts will coordinate the rehabilitation process. This team may include a neurologist, physiatrist, physical therapist, occupational therapist, nutritionist, and mental health professional.

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After a thorough medical examination, a CT scan is done to measure the final volume of the brain. The CT scan will show whether or not there is bleeding or damage. A CT perfusion scan can help doctors see if the blood supply is adequate to the brain. If the CT scan shows a reduced blood supply to the brain, a patient may need to undergo an MRI. But this type of imaging is not available in all hospitals.

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