First, let’s get to know what is stroke

A stroke is a medical emergency condition where the blood supply to the brain is interrupted or reduced, preventing brain tissue from getting oxygen and nutrients.

Prompt treatment is crucial and early action can reduce brain damage and other complications. In Malaysia, stroke is the third leading cause of mortality.

What are the symptoms?

The most crucial thing to take note of if you or someone you’re with may have a stroke is the time when the symptoms began. The diagnosis of stroke is made by evaluating and analyzing information derived from a good history, physical examination and selected diagnostic tests. The signs and symptoms of stroke depend on the type, location, and extent of the affected brain tissues. Some treatments are most effective when given soon after a stroke begins.

Some of the signs and symptoms of stroke include:

  • Speech difficulty and understanding what others are saying
  • Paralysis or numbness of the face, arm, or leg
    This often affects just one side of your body. Another method of testing is by raising both arms over your head at the same time. If one arm begins to fall, it means that you may be having a stroke. One side of your mouth may droop when smiling.
  • Problems seeing in one or both eyes
    You may suddenly experience blurry or blackened vision in one or both eyes, or you may see double.
  • Headache
    You may feel a sudden, severe headache, which may be accompanied by vomiting, dizziness or altered consciousness.

What are the risk factors?

Many factors can increase the risk for stroke, including:

  • Overweight or obese
  • Physical inactivity
  • Heavy or binge drinking
  • Use of illegal drugs
  • High blood pressure
  • Cigarette smoking or secondhand smoke exposure
  • High cholesterol
  • Diabetes
  • Obstructive sleep apnea
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Personal or family history of stroke, heart attack or transient ischaemic attack
  • COVID-19 infection
  • Smoking
  • Physical inactivity
  • Unhealthy eating
  • High systolic blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • High fasting blood glucose
  • High body mass index
  • Environmental factors such as air pollution and lead exposure

Other factors that are not lifestyle and medical-related are:

  • Age
    People age 55 or older have a higher risk of stroke than do younger people.
  • Male Gender
    Men have a higher risk of stroke than women. Women are usually older when they have strokes and they’re more likely to die of strokes than are men.
  • Hormones
    The use of birth control pills or hormone therapies that include estrogen increases risk.

If you or anyone around you shows the symptoms above, get medical professional help immediately.

Learn more about the Neuroscience & Neurospine Centre in Regency Specialist Hospital is committed to providing the best neurological care whenever you need it.

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