The paper is based on extensive analysis of stroke with a primary focus on the causes, symptoms, complications, treatment and cures, and the prevalence of cases in society. The assessment of stroke is fundamental to inform members of the community of the necessary precautionary measures to avoid falling victim of the disease. The occurrence can have fatal implications including sudden death or paralysis of the whole or part of the body. As a result, stroke poses severe health risk on the affected persons as mobility and body functional capacity is undermined significantly. Stroke is considered as a chronic disease that require medical emergence and subsequent treatment. Therefore, taking every precautionary measure to avoid ever developing the problem is crucial to deter being prone to a serious health risk.
Types of Stroke
There exist three types of stroke including Ischemic, Hemorrhagic, and Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA) stroke. According to Center for Disease Control and Prevention, CDC (2020a), 87 percent of stroke cases comprise of Ischemic stroke. This is a type of stroke that results from blood clots that cause the blockage of the artery supplying oxygen-rich blood to the brain deterring blood flow. Hemorrhagic stroke is a result of leak or rupture of an artery in the brain. When an artery ruptures or leaks in the brain, the leaking blood puts enormous pressure on the brain cells leading to their damaging. Hemorrhagic stroke exists in two forms comprise of intracerebral hemorrhage that is the most common and subarachnoid hemorrhage that is less common. Finally, TIA, also referred to as mini-stroke, entails blood blockage in the brain only for a short – often less than five minutes (CDC, 2020a). TIA acts as a warning of potential future stroke and requires medical emergency treatment to avoid becoming a severe health problem.
The risk of stroke is caused by a number of factors that undermine the health of an individual. MedlinePlus (2020) state that, the risk of stroke is intensified among persons with high blood pressure, heart diseases such as atrial fibrillation, and diabetes, among other chronic diseases. These are three main underlying causes of stroke on individuals posing high health risk. Smoking puts an individual in high risk of suffering stroke problem as smoking damages the blood vessels and raises the blood pressure. Among other causes include family history of persons suffering from stroke or TIA, older people are at high risk of developing stroke problems, race and ethnicity especially among African American population (National Institutes of Health (NIH) & National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), n.d.).. High cholesterol levels in the body, unhealthy diet, and lack of physical activity are among the major causes of stroke. Thus, it calls for the maintenance of proper diets and physical activity to limit the cases of stroke among the American population.
Stroke happens fast and calls radical and immediate measures to be taken at the sign of stroke to avoid developing into a severe problem. Among the most identified symptoms of stroke include sudden numbness or weakness of parts of the body on one side such as the arm, leg, or face (Jin, 2014). A person may experience sudden confusion that makes them experience trouble speaking, cognition capacity, or understanding speech. Shortness of sight on one or both eyes experienced by an individual and severe headache with no cause is a sign of stroke (Campbell, 2019). Also, the experience of loss of balance, dizziness, difficulty waking or coordination of the body is analyzed as a sign of stroke. Therefore, due to the sudden nature of the symptoms and successive occurrence of the disease – alerting emergency medical services or calling 9-1-1 is essential to request immediate medical attention and treatment.
The occurrence of stroke possesses a serious health risk on an individual. Persons experiencing stroke are at risk of developing health risks such as brain edema characterized by swelling of the brain and pneumonia that include difficulties in breathing (Kumar, Selim & Caplan, 2010). The blood clots in the brain develop deep vein thrombosis (DVT) problems that pose higher health risk as a result of the damaged brain cells (Kim et al., 2017). Persons suffering from stroke attacks are bound to develop depression among other mood changes complications. This is based on the severity of stroke that renders the body functionality incapacitated to function on their own prompting reliance on other people for everything. Other complications consist of involuntary muscle tightening, aphasia, speech disorders, and development of chronic headaches (Bovim, Askim, Lydersen, Fiaertoft & Indredavik, 2016). Therefore, in the long-term, one is bound to suffer serious defects characterized swallowing, speech and language, memory, emotional functioning, visio-perceptual, and personality changes problems (Bustamante et al., 2017).
Treatment and Cures
The treatment of stroke follows extensive diagnostic tests including CT Scan and/or including MRI. The assessment of the heart tests is essential to identify heart problems and blood clots that pose a risk of stroke. The heart tests are done using an electrocardiogram (EKG) to test for heart disorders such as arrhythmia, heart damage, blocked arteries, heart failure, or heart attack (MedlinePlus, 2020b). Routine evaluation provides consistent data for persons experiencing the problem of stroke. The use of data is essential to inform medical decisions used in the treatment of stroke such as the use of medicine, rehabilitation, or surgery procedures (Sidhartha et al., 2015). Therefore, depending on the stage or severity of stroke – medical treatment approach is determined based on the existing data.
The capacity to prevent the first stroke is the most essential feature of treating stroke. This follows taking precautionary measures including eating healthy diets, regular physical exercising, and keeping fit. The capacity to keep the cholesterol levels low is important to avoid developing health problems that cause stroke (Musuka, Wilton, Traboulsi & Hill, 2015). Stress management and avoiding smoking are critical measures in the treatment and cure for strokes.
Prevalence in Society
The prevalence of stroke in society is found to pose a significant health risk on the community. According to CDC (2020b) stroke statistics data, 140,000 deaths annually in the United States are as a result of stroke. That implies one of every twenty deaths is as a result of stroke. The statistical data shows that in every forty seconds, someone in the country experiences a stroke and someone dies in every four minutes (CDC, 2020b). Annually, approximately 800,000 people in the country have stroke with 600,000 cases being new cases. Persons above the age of 65 are at high risk of stroke and developing further complications such as immobility – a long-term disability. The African Americans are nearly twice at risk of experience stroke as compared to the white population showing the prevalence of the problem based on race and ethnicity. Therefore, early action is vital to mitigate the problem of stroke from developing into severe levels.
Bovim, M. R., Askim, T., Lydersen, S., Fjærtoft, H., & Indredavik, B. (2016). Complications in the first week after stroke: a 10-year comparison. BMC neurology, 16(1), 133.
Bustamante, A., Giralt, D., García-Berrocoso, T., Rubiera, M., Álvarez-Sabín, J., Molina, C., … & Montaner, J. (2017). The impact of post-stroke complications on in-hospital mortality depends on stroke severity. European stroke journal, 2(1), 54-63.
Campbell, B. C. (2019). Advances in stroke medicine. Medical Journal of Australia, 210(8), 367-374.
Center for Disease Control and Prevention, CDC. (Jan 31, 2020a). Stroke: Types of Stroke. Retrieved August 5, 2020, from https://www.cdc.gov/stroke/types_of_stroke.htm
Center for Disease Control and Prevention, CDC. (Jan 31, 2020b). Stroke: Stroke Facts. Retrieved August 5, 2020, from https://www.cdc.gov/stroke/facts.htm
Jin, J. (2014). Warning Signs of a Stroke. Jama, 311(16), 1704-1704.
Kim, B. R., Lee, J., Sohn, M. K., Kim, D. Y., Lee, S. G., Shin, Y. I., … & Kim, Y. H. (2017). Risk factors and functional impact of medical complications in stroke. Annals of Rehabilitation Medicine, 41(5), 753.
Kumar, S., Selim, M. H., & Caplan, L. R. (2010). Medical complications after stroke. The Lancet Neurology, 9(1), 105-118.
MedlinePlus. (Feb 25, 2020b). Electrocardiogram. Retrieved August 5, 2020, from https://medlineplus.gov/lab-tests/electrocardiogram/
MedlinePlus. (Jul 28, 2020a). Stroke: Summary. Retrieved August 5, 2020, from https://medlineplus.gov/stroke.html
Musuka, T. D., Wilton, S. B., Traboulsi, M., & Hill, M. D. (2015). Diagnosis and management of acute ischemic stroke: speed is critical. Cmaj, 187(12), 887-893.
National Institutes of Health (NIH) and National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS). (n.d.). Know Stroke: Know the Signs. Act in Time. Retrieved August 5, 2020, from https://medlineplus.gov/lab-tests/electrocardiogram/
Sidhartha, J. M., Purma, A. R., Reddy, L. V. P. K., Sagar, N. K., Teja, M. P., Subbaiah, M. V., & Purushothaman, M. (2015). Risk factors for medical complications of acute hemorrhagic stroke. Journal of Acute Disease, 4(3), 222-225.
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