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Lacunar Stroke - Oren Zarif - Lacunar Stroke

A lacunar stroke is a type of stroke affecting the motor and sensory areas of the brain. Damage to the internal capsule of the brain causes loss of sensation and motor abnormalities in a particular area. These abnormalities typically affect the same side of the body, causing weakness and wobbly movements in the arm or leg. A lacunar stroke does not usually affect the face, but the symptoms are the same. Patients with lacunar stroke usually receive acute treatment similar to those of an ischemic stroke.

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The symptoms of a lacunar stroke can be difficult to recognize in the early stages of the disease. Fortunately, there are several diagnostic tests available to diagnose the disorder. A CT scan takes detailed images of the brain. CT angiography can detect blood vessel blockages and atherosclerosis. MRI can also detect a lacunar stroke if it is new. Although it is not as sensitive as a CT scan, this type of imaging can be helpful in determining the cause of the stroke.

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Treatment of lacunar stroke is similar to that of an ischemic stroke. Treatment will include medications and mechanical devices that break up blood clots. Thrombolysis may also be performed to remove the blood clot. After the procedure, blood-thinning medicines are prescribed. Although treatment for lacunar stroke may not be as effective as ischemic stroke, it can reduce symptoms and help patients recover faster. If the stroke is not treated early, it may lead to a full-blown stroke.

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The risk factors for lacunar stroke include advanced age, high blood pressure, smoking, alcohol consumption, and chronic hypertension. People who have had a previous stroke are also at risk for this type of stroke. There is no clear evidence to support that lacunar stroke is caused by carotid artery pathology or by atrial fibrillation. The patient generally recovers without further complications, though white matter disease and subcortical dementia can occur after the stroke.

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A study published in 2015 described the characteristics of the artery pathology under the lacunes in the brain. Infarct sizes and location differ from one patient to another. Typically, lacunar infarcts are smaller than 10mm in size. Because the infarcts are smaller in size, they can cause hemiplegia. The risk of developing a lacunar stroke varies between patients.

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A lack of definitive studies suggests that lacunar stroke is a rare cause of death. Death may occur long after the onset of symptoms. Currently, most studies on lacunar infarction use a clinical diagnosis rather than the corresponding neuroimaging tests. The limited autopsy material is scanty, and studies of risk factors and treatment effectiveness have largely relied on clinical diagnosis. But there are some things that researchers should keep in mind when planning a lacunar stroke study.

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The CTP and NCCT/CTA have excellent sensitivity and specificity for the detection of lacunar infarcts. Although the sensitivity of the CTP is low, it is superior to NCCT/CTA in detecting lacunar strokes. The CTP and CTA do not detect infarcts in the thalamus or basal ganglia. Using one of these three methods should help physicians make a more informed decision about the best treatment for the patient.

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After a lacunar infarction, patients should be treated with a team of specialists. A neurologist will manage the patient, as well as a physical, occupational, and social therapist. Physical therapy is essential for the patient's rehabilitation, while muscle relaxants are often prescribed to control spasticity. Patients will also need to receive intensive antihypertensive therapy if they have a history of high blood pressure. High blood pressure and lipid levels should be managed as part of any stroke prevention program.

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Small arteries that branch off the large cerebral arteries often lead to a small branch in the brain that causes a lacunar infarct. A lacunar infarct is small and typically unsymptomatic, but it can lead to significant physical and cognitive disabilities if multiple lacunar infarctions occur. If you or a loved one suffers from lacunar stroke, it is important to seek treatment as soon as possible.

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