Baptist Health Louisville: Signs of a Stroke & Treatment
Detecting a stroke early on is vital to both recovery and treatment. Learn more about the warning signs of a stroke from Baptist Health Louisville.
Signs of a Stroke & Treatment HealthTalks Transcript
James B. Thornton, MD, Neurology:
Stroke is a medical emergency caused by a blocked blood vessel in the brain. As far as treatments for stroke, there are two main ones. They do the same thing. The medical treatment is called TPA. It’s a medicine that we give that breaks up blood clots. It’s given in an IV and it breaks up clots in the brain. There’s another treatment called embolectomy, where a surgeon actually goes in directly and pulls the clot out of the brain.
The most important thing [to know] with stroke is that it progresses quickly. The things that we use to treat [stroke] are very time-limited. They have to be given very quickly to help somebody. The most important thing to do is call 911 and get to the hospital as quickly as you can.
The warning signs of stroke are difficult. The American Stroke Association came up with a memory aid called BE FAST. B is for balance, a sudden inability to walk or stand. E is for eyes, trouble with double vision or loss of vision. F is for face, facial droop. A is for arm weakness on either side of the body. S is for speech, trouble talking or understanding. T is for time, because all the treatments we have are time-limited, so people have to act quickly.
For stroke treatment, the most important thing is to come to a facility with multidisciplinary care. At Baptist Health Louisville, we’ve got a team that includes emergency physicians, stroke neurologists, radiologists, neurosurgeons and interventional radiologists who can help both assess the stroke and get you the best treatment. When we’re able to act quickly, restore the blood flow, and get people back to normal, it really makes everything we do worthwhile.
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