A stroke is a profoundly serious health condition that requires quick treatment to prevent death or severe disability. Every year, strokes take nearly 130,000 lives in the United States, accounting for one out of every 20 deaths. Strokes are also one of the main causes of long-term disability and handicap among Americans. They require extensive rehabilitation in those who survive and account for over $34 billion in health care costs every year. Strokes can be prevented. This article will help you understand more about strokes, diagnosis, and treatment. Also included are helpful prevention tips if you are at risk.
What is a Stroke?
A stroke is a cerebrovascular accident that is caused by the restriction of blood supply to the brain. This reduces the amount of oxygen to the brain cells and they begin to die off. When brain cells become damaged and die, the symptoms affect the area in the body that the damaged section controls. This is why symptoms often occur on only one side of the body.
Strokes are very serious and require immediate life-saving emergency help. The longer treatment is delayed, the more damage to brain cells. This can lead to paralysis, loss of ability to speak or swallow, or in some cases, death.