Types of stroke You Should Know About In 2023
Recognising the signs of a stroke and seeking immediate medical attention is crucial, particularly within the first 3-4 hours of symptom onset. There are two main types of stroke:
1. Ischemic stroke
This occurs when there is a blockage of blood flow to one or more parts of the brain. The ‘Golden hour’ refers to the crucial initial hours following symptom onset. If the symptoms are identified early, the patient can be taken to a specialised stroke centre. Here, an injection can be administered to dissolve the clot causing the blockage in the blood vessel, a process known as recanalization. This timely intervention can limit brain damage and lead to better outcomes.
2. Hemorrhagic stroke
This type of stroke involves bleeding in one or more areas of the brain. Identifying the bleed early may require urgent surgical intervention in some cases. The sooner the surgery is performed, the higher the chances of survival.
Both ischemic and hemorrhagic strokes require rapid response. In recent years, certain endovascular procedures have emerged for ischemic stroke, resembling the angioplasty performed for the heart. These procedures involve using wires and catheters to access the brain’s blood vessels. Clots can be extracted, and blocked blood vessels can be reopened. If the blood vessel is successfully reopened in a timely manner, the outcome is generally more favourable.
Understanding the symptoms of stroke and acting quickly can make a significant difference in treatment options and potential recovery.