5 Misconceptions About Stroke


While 'stroke', known as 'paralysis' in the society, is the third cause of death in our country as well as in the world, it rises to the first rank among the diseases that cause disability. In the prevalence of death and disability in stroke patients, misinformation about the disease, which is believed to be correct, plays an important role. Since there is not enough awareness about stroke in the society, preventive measures are not taken, warning signs are not noticed or it is delayed to apply to the health institution with the thought that 'it passed anyway'. As a result, patients who have a chance to be saved with early intervention may lose their lives. Acıbadem Dr. Şinasi Can (Kadıköy Hospital) Neurology Specialist Dr. Nebahat Bilici drew attention to the fact that, contrary to the popular belief in the society, most of the stroke cases can actually be cured today, and said, "So much so that, in the most common ischemic stroke, in other words, in the blockages in the vessels feeding the brain cells, especially in the first 3-4 hours period, the intravascular clot-dissolving agent made before the brain cells die. Neurological findings of the patient can be completely reversed with drugs or mechanical removal of the clot. As long as it is not too late to apply to the health institution.” says.

False: Stroke symptoms are gone, I don't need to see a doctor

Actually: “Strokes whose symptoms such as numbness or weakness in the arm or leg, difficulty in speaking and sudden onset severe headache are completely resolved within 24 hours are called 'transient ischemic attacks' and these constitute the warning sign for a complete stroke. Therefore, it should be taken seriously and a doctor should be consulted.” said Dr. Nebahat Bilici gives the following information about ischemic attack: “The duration of the attack takes an average of 2-15 minutes. The shortness of time should not be seen as a comforting feature. The risk of having a stroke within 90 days of a transient ischemic attack is approximately 10 percent. About half of these cases occur within the first 1-2 days. If important warning signs are overlooked or ignored, the chances of surviving permanent disability or death that may occur in the following days may be lost.”

False: Stroke is an incurable disease

Actually: Contrary to popular belief, 'stroke' is a preventable disease. Hypertension is the primary risk factor for all types of stroke. It can lead to stroke by disrupting the vascular structure of the brain. Diabetes often causes stroke by disrupting the large vascular structure. Heart rhythm disorders, rheumatic heart diseases, previous heart attack, cardiovascular diseases are also serious risk factors for ischemic stroke. Therefore, when risk factors such as high blood fats (cholesterol and triglycerides), hypertension, diabetes and obesity as well as smoking, alcohol and sedentary life are controlled, strokes can be prevented by almost 80 percent. A Mediterranean diet rich in fish, vegetables and olive oil also helps reduce the risk of stroke.

False: Problems such as difficulty in speaking, loss of vision, loss of strength in arms and legs after stroke are permanent.

Actually: Damages such as loss of strength, speech disorder and vision loss after stroke can be treated if early intervention is made. However, while the damage heals within days to weeks in some patients, this can take months if the damage is severe. Neurologist Dr. Stating that the most important period in rehabilitation is the first 6 months, Nebahat Bilici said, “The patient reaches approximately 50 percent of his/her recovery potential during this period. There is a rapid recovery in one year in the stroke patient, and partial or complete recovery from the stroke can be seen. Findings that last longer than a year are much slower to improve,” he says.

False: There is no cure for stroke

Actually: Neurologist Dr. Contrary to popular belief, Nebahat Bilici was admitted to the hospital. zamStating that stroke can be cured in many patients when applied immediately, he continues: “If the patient is intervened in the first 4-6 hours from the onset of neurological findings, there is a chance that obstructive strokes caused by clotting can be completely healed with clot-dissolving drugs. However, in order for this treatment to be applied, patients need to be transported quickly to appropriate hospitals where treatment can be performed.”

Emphasizing that the treatment is applied for the cause, Dr. Nebahat Bilici said, “For example, if the patient has a rhythm disorder such as 'atrial fibrillation' or a previous heart valve surgery, anticoagulant, in other words, treatment that prevents blood from clotting is applied. If a plaque causing further stenosis in the carotid artery is responsible for the stroke, it is recommended to open this vessel surgically or with a stent. As a result, treatment and approach vary from patient to patient.”

False: Stroke occurs only in advanced age

Actually: Stroke can occur at any age, although the risk increases with age. So much so that an estimated 10 percent of strokes develop in people under the age of 50. Neurologist Dr. Nebahat Bilici lists some of the causes of stroke in people under the age of 50 as follows:

Congenital heart diseases: Structural anomalies of the heart or structural disorders of the heart that cause irregular heart rhythms increase the risk of stroke.

Bleeding-coagulation disorders: Sickle cell anemia and deformed sickle cell blood cells can clog arteries and veins and significantly increase the risk of stroke. Young people are 200 times more likely to have this risk than someone without sickle cell disease.

Metabolic states: conditions such as Fabry disease; Narrowing of the blood vessels that supply blood to the brain can lead to stroke risk factors such as high blood pressure or abnormal cholesterol levels.

Vasculitis: Inflammation of the walls of blood vessels (arteries, veins and capillaries); It can cause damage to the veins by making changes such as thickening, narrowing and weakening of the veins. As a result of this, since the blood flow to the tissues and organs fed by the vein will be limited, damage occurs in these sections.

Alcohol-substance addiction: Alcohol and substance abuse are other causes of stroke.

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