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Comparing Different Types of Strokes

Last updated 4 years ago

Strokes are sometimes called “brain attacks” because they affect the brain much in the same way a heart attack affects the heart. Blood flow to the brain is disrupted, and brain tissue begins to die, which can lead to long-term disability and loss of life. There are three different kinds of strokes, but they all share one common denominator: fast treatment is the key to good outcomes. Here is what you need to know about the different types of stokes.

Ischemic Strokes

Eighty-five percent of strokes are ischemic strokes, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. An ischemic stroke occurs when an artery that leads into your brain becomes blocked. The blockage is usually caused by a blood clot but plaque build-up also plays a role. You can reduce your odds of having an ischemic stroke by eating a healthy diet, maintaining a healthy weight, and being physically active.

Hemorrhagic Strokes

With a hemorrhagic stroke, an artery in the brain leaks or ruptures. High blood pressure can cause an artery rupture, as can an aneurysm, which is a balloon-like bulge in a vessel. These leaks and ruptures disrupt blood flow and allow blood to fill up around the brain. The blood eventually puts pressure on the brain, destroying tissue. Reducing sodium intake and following your doctor’s orders to manage your high blood pressure can help reduce this kind of stroke.

Transient Ischemic Attacks

Transient ischemic attacks, or TIAs, are also known was mini-strokes. They occur when an artery is blocked for a short time and then clears up. Usually, TIAs last for less than five minutes. Although long-term damage from a TIA is rare, they are often indicators that a larger stroke is coming in the future. More than one-third of people who experience a TIA have a major stroke within a year without treatment and lifestyle changes.

The Neuroscience Institute at Northside Hospital offers the only Comprehensive Stroke Designation in the St Petersburg area. Our stroke care team has also won a Gold Plus Achievement Awards for Stroke Care from the American Heart Association. If you think you or someone you know is experiencing a stroke, seek emergency care at Northside Hospital Right away. You can learn more about our stroke care and other services by calling (888) 598-9586. 


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