The IndUS Network e-magazine

Strike the stroke before the Stroke strikes you ...

Stroke Awareness month


What is a Stroke?

A stroke, or cerebrovascular accident (CVA), occurs when blood supply to part of the brain is disrupted, causing brain cells to die.
A stroke affects work, lifestyle activities, relationships, mood, communication with others, physical capabilities, and thinking skills needed to solve problems. Remember, many survivors may not achieve the desired quality of life even after appropriate rehabilitation.
This article is provided to make you aware of the stroke and be prepared to strike the stroke before the stroke strikes you.

Who is Vulnerable to Stroke?

Contrary to conventional thinking, it's not just senior citizens who suffer strokes. Even teens, children and infants can be susceptible.

Across all age groups, more men than women have strokes, but the fatality is more in women than men. (Twice as many women die from stroke than from breast cancer). In the 18-to 45-year age group, more women than men suffer strokes.

Women over age 30 who smoke and take high-estrogen oral contraceptives have a stroke risk 22 times higher than average.

Women who are pregnant have a slightly increased risk of stroke.

What causes increased risk of Stroke?

Eating less-healthy diets and getting less exercise, increased hyperlipidemia (unhealthy levels of fat in the blood),obesity, diabetes, and migraines due to narrowed blood vessel. Also, hypertension (increased blood pressure) can cause a hemorrhage (bleeding)
Sports injuries, cervical (neck) manipulations, or aggressive neck massage may cause small tears in the arteries, allowing blood clots to form. These actions may also dislodge the clots, which could then travel to the brain, causing a blockage and stroke (thrombolytic).
There may also be a family or genetic component attached to stroke risk as well.

Warning signs preceding a Stroke

Warning signs of a stroke may appear as early as seven days before an attack and require urgent treatment to prevent serious damage to the brain.
Common event is a “mini-stroke” or TIA (transient ischemic attack), which is a temporary stroke lasting 5 to 10 minutes. What can happen?
• Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg, especially on one side of the body.
• Sudden confusion or problems understanding.
• Sudden difficulty speaking.

• Sudden vision difficulty in one or both eyes

• Sudden dizziness, loss of balance or co-ordination, or difficulty in walking.

• Sudden, severe headache with no apparent cause.

Recognizing a stroke victim

Remember the '3' letters, STR..
The lack of awareness spells disaster. The stroke victim may suffer severe brain damage when people nearby fail to recognize the symptoms of a stroke

S *Ask the individual to SMILE.
T *Ask the person to TALK and speak a simple sentence coherently
R *Ask him or her to RAISE both arms.
Also, ask the person stick out the tongue. If it goes to one side or the other, then again it indicates a stroke.
If any one action fails, call emergency immediately.

Why Stroke needs immediate treatment: Time lost is Brain lost

Every minute of a stroke, a person loses millions of brain cells and a piece of brain the size of a pea will die every 12 minutes and there is "a brief window” of opportunity to intervene.
A powerful clot-dissolving drug called tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) can effectively reduce long-term disability if given within three hours. Other treatments include anticoagulant drugs and surgery.

Bottom Line: No use worrying about the stroke itself, start thinking about risk prevention right away.

What does Alternative Medicine say about Stroke?

There are many alternative healing methods documented that claims to prevent and recover from Stroke. The ancient Chinese method of healing such as Accupressure and Accupuncture claims to act as a nerve stimulator during stroke rehabilitation. They also claim to help in recovery following a stroke. It is a interesting to note that WHO gives attention to Accupressure and Accupuncture in its traditional medicine program.

There are also holistic healing methods such as PRANIC HEALING & REIKI which treats the energy field surrounding a human body, accelerates the healing process of the body and claim to enhance the vitality and energy levels. It is said that they can eradicate the adverse side-effects in cases of surgical, chemical, radiations and medical therapies.

Numerous scientific studies are proving the effectiveness of meditation, energy healing and yoga in increasing our healing power. Also there are a number of food and herbal choices that can help prevent stroke.(Omega-3 fatty acids, Green tea extracts, Garlic).

It is time that newer methods become accepted along with conventional medicine to provide a higher level of health care for humans.

However eating right and exercising regularly is a better approach than any approach to cure!

Tension ...

Teacher: Tell me one living or non-living thing which does not reveal its tension?
Student: Water
Teacher: Why?
Student: Water has "surface tension" but still does not show off!


Disclaimer: The above content is provided for information and awareness purpose only. It is not prescriptive or suggestive or meant to replaces your qualified physician's advice or consultation.