What Is Stroke – Risk factors, causes, types and diagnosis of Stroke
Stroke also know as Apoplexy is The sudden impairment of brain function resulting either from the absence of substantial flow of blood to some part of the brain or from inter-cranial bleeding.
The aftereffect of stroke always leaves the victim with a fleeting or in some cases permanent paralysis on one or all parts of the body it can also result in speech impediment, difficulties in eating and loss in muscle coordination. It furthermore causes brain infarction
What are the risk factors?
Every individual is at risk of having a stroke, it becomes slightly inevitable when certain factors are considered because these factors when manifesting in a person increases the risk of its occurrence
- Ageing: this happens to be one of the biggest risk factors for stroke, simply because our arteries naturally become narrower and harder as we grow older making it difficult for blood to pass through.
- Smoking: the introduction of carbon monoxide into the body reduces the amount of oxygen, and the nicotine amplifies the heartbeat, increasing blood pressure, it can certainly trigger a chain of reaction that leads to Atrial fibrillation either directly or indirectly.
- Hypertension: High blood pressure fixate extra strain on all blood vessels making them stiffer and narrower
- High Cholesterols: the fatty deposits build up in the artery caused by high cholesterols blocks the amount of oxygen reaching the brain cells
- Diabetes and Heritage defects: this is an already established factor for stroke, this causes a pathologic change in blood vessels situated at various locations and it would lead to stroke if the cerebral vessels are directly affected.
Stroke happens to be more inter mutual between men than in women and the risk of death is much higher in African Americans than in Caucasians, this difference is basically due to the higher dominance of hypertension In African Americans.
Some people are exposed to stroke because of genetic variation and possible modifications, with time research carried out on nearly 20,000 Europeans and Americans pinpointed the genetic variations that enlarge the risk of stroke.
In a study, a specific variation was discovered to occur in 20 per cent of Caucasians and 10 per cent of African America. This variation was later identified as Single Nucleotide Polymorphism,(SNP) it occurs in chromosomes 12 and it’s relatively associated with Ischemic stroke- which occurs as a result of inadequate supply of blood to the brain.
Although the method through which the SNP contributes to stroke is still unknown, the already created awareness and knowledge gotten from the research of such variant can most definitely lead to the development of an ameliorate diagnosis and treatment.
Causes of Stroke
It’s already a known and agreeable fact that the major cause of stroke is Thombrus(blood clots formed within a blood vessel in the brain).
Blood clotting mainly originates from injuries, some of these clottings from several parts of the body possess the tendency to journey from their point of origin to the artery supplying brain tissue and lodge there, this is known as Embolism.
On some occasions, myocardial infarction(heart attack) which involves damage to a heart valve or a deviant heartbeat(Atrial Fibrillation) can cause blood clots that can reach the brain.
Both types of clots equally contribute to the reduced flow or stoppage of blood flow to the brain cells, The condition of the early stage of stroke can become intricate if blood and fluids start leaking in the surrounding areas.
Stroke can also arise as a result of Atherosclerosis; the building up of fatty deposits on the outer walls. Atherosclerosis is often guilty of causing interruptions of blood flow due to the spasm of the arteries being ruptured further causing the segments of the vessel to be narrowed by fatty deposits.
Types Of Stroke
Transient Ischemia attack (otherwise known as a mini-stroke); this occurs when the long thin artery leading to the brain becomes clogged by Atherosclerosis, this Leads to the loss of blood supply in the surrounding tissues, the tissue starts to mummify itself, creating tiny openings called Lacunes, a continuous successive attacks of transient ischemia would lead to dementia.
Hemorrhagic stroke: this type of stroke is caused by intracranial bleeding, it occurs when an artery is ruptured usually because of a weakening of the arterial structure by Atherosclerosis or because of the shrinking of the artery walls due to hypertension.
The genesis of a stroke while taking an effect on an individual could be grand, the onset of it always comes with a large dose of paralysis partial or not, which would eventually lead to the disruption of speech, and to summarise it all it brings about death as an end result within an abbreviated period.
Mostly within several hours or days, in some cases it is manifested by series of ischemic attacks in which the patient would experience weakness, numbness of various distinct body parts, confusion as well as visual impairment, these ischemic attacks may reiterate many times but be rest assured the result is always paralysis.
Diagnosis And Treatments
The first step to take while attending to stroke is to distinguish the cause of it, several causes at times require different forms of treatment, take for example the Anticoagulant drugs, they are progressively used in treating strokes resulting from thromboses and emboli but they become inexpedient to be used when treating stroke resulting from Hemorrhage.
Many causes of stroke can also be narrowed down to the closure of one of the two carotid arteries that feed the brain, luckily this kind of closure only involves a partial segment and a simple surgery could be used to correct such obstruction, or implant a synthetic bypass.
Survival of stroke even though made possible hasn’t still been enough to curb the widespread of death caused by it many after surviving such, still tend to die mostly because of trauma early and consistent efforts for rejuvenation are essential as well as physical, occupational and speech therapy, this should kick start a day or two after the stroke.