A stroke is a brain injury where the bloodstream within your brain is affected by a blood clot (ischemic) or bleeding (hemorrhagic). When a stroke happens, it has the possibility of permanently affecting your ability to perform everyday functions (depending on which part of the brain is affected). With stroke rehab and proper treatment, you can recover or adapt to life following the stroke. If not treated or if no proper action is taken following the start of a stroke, it can lead to serious problems, including death.

Causes of a Stroke

If you suspect that you or someone you know is having a stroke, call 911 or other emergency services right away! A stroke usually happens suddenly but its symptoms can occur over several hours. The two primary causes of strokes are ischemic (caused by a blood clot) and hemorrhagic (caused by bleeding in the brain) and there are specific symptoms associated with each one.

With this guide, you’ll discover a simple way to remember the symptoms of a stroke.

The side-effects of a Stroke

Once the symptoms of a stroke appear, life-threatening problems can develop. That’s why it’s so important to seek medical help immediately. Things like increased pressure on the brain, blood pressure changes, and blood clots in the legs can all lead to further problems or even death.

With this guide, you’ll learn about the complications that may develop soon after stroke symptoms occur and how doctors may treat them to try to stop further damage.

Avoiding a Second Stroke

Did you know there are things you can do to prevent another stroke? Making healthy lifestyle changes, taking medicine, managing other health problems, and taking part in a stroke recovery program are all steps you can take to help prevent another stroke. Find out what’s involved in helping you reduce your risk.

This guide walks you through why it’s important to take medicines exactly as prescribed, how to manage other health conditions, and how a stroke rehab program can help you.

What is a Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA) Stroke?

You may have had some or all of the symptoms of a stroke only to have them disappear after 10 to 20 minutes. This could mean you’ve suffered a TIA, a transient ischemic attack, often called a mini-stroke. A TIA happens when blood flow to part of the brain is blocked or reduced for a short time, then blood flows again and your symptoms go away.

If you have a TIA, it’s a warning that you could have a stroke in the near future. You need to call 911 or other emergency services right away. Early treatment can help prevent a more serious stroke.

This guide can help you understand the symptoms and causes of TIA, what tests you can expect your doctor to perform, and how your TIA will be treated.

Getting a Carotid Artery Procedure

If you haven’t yet had a stroke or TIA but you have carotid artery stenosis, this information may help you decide whether or not a carotid artery procedure is the right step for you in helping to prevent a stroke. This narrowing of the artery that carries blood to your brain can be managed with this surgical procedure or with other treatments like healthy habits and medicines. If you have severe narrowing, you may be considering whether a carotid artery procedure is right for you. As with many treatment decisions, there are trade-offs to consider, such as short-term risks vs. long-term benefits and length of rehabilitation.

To help you weigh your options, understand your feelings, and make an informed decision, use this interactive guide.