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4 Signs to Consider in Diagnosing Stroke

My Doctor Finder
January 11, 2016

Stroke occurs quickly, most of the time its diagnosis will have to be made before an individual can be seen by a doctor.

For a better understanding of its steps on how to diagnose stroke, one must remember the word FAST.

  • F - Face Drooping
  • Once the person attempts to smile, notice if one side of his or her face tends to droop.
  • A - Arm Weakness
  • If the person happens to raise their arms and he or she finds it difficult to raise it in the same height or level.
  • S - Speech Difficulty
  • When the person speaks and tries to repeat a simple phrase but ends up having difficulty with the word and it all becomes slurred and strange.
  • T - Time to Call
  • If the first three signs appeared, one must immediately seek for medical assistance and contact the emergency services.

It is important to diagnose the symptoms and immediately treat it during its early stages to minimize or prevent brain damage. The quicker the treatment process will be, the lesser the damage it may bring to one’s brain. As the two main kinds, ischemic stroke and hemorrhagic stroke, differ from one another so is their way of treatment.

For ischemic stroke cases, treatment can begin with drugs that can break down clots and prevent further blocking and clotting of the blood vessels. Once the clot hasn’t subsided, surgery must be performed. Meanwhile, for hemorrhagic stroke cases, treatment can begin with drugs that can reduce the pressure in the brain that’s causing the seizures and prevent sudden constrictions of blood vessels. Like the ischemic stroke, surgery must be performed once the problems with the blood vessels have led to a bigger problem.

Having a stroke can be life changing and can definitely affect a person both physically and emotionally. With this, rehabilitating activities must be performed for the person to fully recover. The following activities are highly recommended:

  • Speech therapy - This therapy may help the person develop his or her speech skills. It will develop the person’s problem when it comes to his or her producing or understanding speech.
  • Physical therapy - This will help the person with his or her relearning movement and coordination.
  • Occupational therapy - Once finished, one’s daily routine activities such as bathing, cooking, dressing, eating, reading, and writing.
  • Join a support group - Being surrounded with the community that suffers the same condition. Through this, it will be easier for the person to share common experiences and exchange information.
  • Support from your loved ones - Having your loved ones with you like your family and friends can provide comfort. Also, letting them know your feelings can help the person to recover emotionally and mentally.

In order to prevent the recurrence of stroke, having your monthly check-up with a neurologist is highly suggested.

Sources:
"Stroke: Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment" by James McIntosh of Medical News Today