Stroke-related disabilities including vision loss can be prevented through early detection
About 32,000 brain cells get damaged with every second of not detecting a stroke early
A stroke is a serious life-threatening medical condition that occurs when the blood supply to part of the brain is cut off. The injury to the brain caused by a stroke can lead to widespread and long-lasting problems. It is imperative to detect a stroke early, as with every second that the disease goes untreated, about 32,000 brain cells are damaged.
Speaking about this, Padma Shri Awardee, Dr KK Aggarwal, President, HCFI, said, "Time is brain. A patient with suspected stroke or 'brain attack' should therefore be shifted to hospital at the earliest and given a clot dissolving therapy. A stroke may result from a blocked artery (ischemic stroke) or the leaking or bursting of a blood vessel (hemorrhagic stroke). In others, there could be a temporary disruption of blood flow to the brain (transient ischemic attack, or TIA). About 85% of strokes are ischemic in nature. Some common risk factors for stroke in the country include hypertension, diabetes, smoking, and dyslipidemia. These are further insufficiently controlled due to low awareness levels about the disease. Another major challenge in this direction is that treatment for stroke is still evolving in our country."
The acronym FAST can be used to recognize the warning signs of stroke: face drooping, arm weakness, speech difficulty, and time to emergency. The disabilities caused due to a stroke can be temporary or permanent, depending on how long the brain lacks blood flow and which part is affected.
Adding further, Dr Aggarwal, who is also the Group Editor-in-Chief of IJCP, said, "Stroke is an emergency and getting timely help and treatment is extremely important. Hence, it is very important to act fast to identify these patients. Early treatment improves the chances of recovery. While one cannot control factors such as race, gender, and genetic predisposition, it is possible to make certain lifestyle changes which will go a long way in reducing a person's chances of getting a stroke at a young age."
Some tips to prevent stroke from HCFI
· Lower your blood pressure levels as a high BP is one of the leading causes for a stroke.
· Losing weight can help prevent other associated complications.
· Indulge in about 30 minutes of physical activity every day.
· Quit smoking and drink in moderation if you must.
· Keep your blood sugar levels under control.
· Reduce stress through activities such as meditation and yoga.
Dr K K Aggarwal