The first question that arises in our mind, after reading the word “stroke” is, what is a stroke? A stroke is like a heart attack, just the affected part here is the brain. It happens, when the usual blood supply to a certain part of the brain gets cut out. As we all know, blood carries both oxygen and essential nutrients to various parts of our body, including the brain, and once this blood supply gets cut out, the brain stops receiving blood, which leads to damaging of the brain cells. This damage can have various effects on the body, which depends upon the damaged part of the brain, as each part of the brain has their own individual function. A stroke can be really deadly and can easily affect your feel and communication system, as well as your working on the body.
There are three types of strokes, and they are – ischemic stroke, hemorrhagic and transient ischemic attack (TIA).
Ischemic Stroke – The concept of ischemic stroke, is a lot similar to a heart attack, where a blood clot prevents the blood flow to the heart, in this case which is the brain. Therefore, an ischemic stroke is caused due to, the clotting of blood, which stops the flowing of blood to the brain. Atherosclerosis, which is nothing but the deposition and the build-up of the fatty acid on the inner surface of a blood vessel, and this atherosclerosis is the main reason behind the blood clot. Just a small portion of this fatty acid, can lead to the clot formation, resulting in blockages. The ischemic stroke is embolic, which means that the blood clot can travel from one part of the body, to the brain. The estimated rate of embolic strokes is 15% and this is caused due to the irregular beating of the heart which is medically known as atrial fibrillation. An ischemic stroke, where a clot is formed inside a blood vessel, is called as a thrombotic stroke. It is said that about 87% of stroke are ischemic stroke.
Hemorrhagic Stroke – A hemorrhagic stroke is another major stroke. It is caused, when a blood vessel bursts due to high pressure of the blood, passing through the vessels. It is caused due to the leaking or rupturing of an artery. The blood, which leaks from the vessels, puts way too much pressure on the brain, and damages the affected parts, leading to a stroke. Hemorrhagic strokes are usually caused due to high blood pressure or balloon like bulging of an artery, i.e. aneurysms. There are two types of hemorrhagic strokes:
Intracerebral hemorrhage – It occurs when an artery leak or bursts out and floods the surrounding tissue with blood. It is the most common type.
Subarachnoid hemorrhage – It is actually the bleeding between the thin tissue parts and the brain. It is not that common.
Also, there is another type, known as arteriovenous malformation, in which excess blood vessels are formed abnormally, and if one of such ruptures, it leads to hemorrhagic stroke as well.
Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA) – A transient ischemic attack is medically known as a “mini-stroke”, as that is what it is. It is not that harmful, and is a lot less dangerous than the major types of strokes, because in this case, the blood flow to the brain is stopped for some 5 minutes or so, resulting in a mini stroke. The blockage in the blood flow to the brain is for a short period of time, and thus doesn’t cause much damage. Since these are mini strokes, it is not advisable to avoid these. These should be considered seriously as well, for TIA is a way of indicating of a future stroke, and is also a medical emergency like the other strokes. TIA is also caused due to blood clots, and at first, it is hardly recognizable, whether it is a mere TIA or a major stroke. If the TIA is not treated properly, if the body is not treated properly, even after the warning, then there is a high possibility of a major stroke happening within a year, in some cases it even happens within a couple of ones.
The treatment, for all these three types of strokes is very much possible. But what is important is getting the right treatment. Also, timing plays an important role, the sooner, you get yourself treated, the better it is and more are the chances of fast recovery. Since, stroke is a medical emergency, call your local emergency number and get treated immediately.