Spot a Stroke – 3 Things to Do and Not to Do
A stroke is also referred to as a “brain attack” and every moment is important during these medical situations. You need to act accordingly in order to save someone’s life who is getting a stroke. Usually, the oxygen and blood supply get cut off from the brain, which disrupts the function. Stroke can occur due to a blockage or a clot, or a bursting of a blood vessel. If the stroke is left untold and untreated, then the brain cells die, which leads to a life-threatening situation for the patient. There are various treatments that are advised and recommended to save the person during this critical moment. However, it is also very much essential to take the person to the hospital on time. You can also consult with the best neurologist in Kolkata.
So, let’s get to know how you can help a friend, family member or any acquaintance who is suffering from a stroke.
What are the types of stroke?
Strokes can happen without any warning, and the most affected part is the brain, which can put a halt to the functioning of other organs or any fatal incident.
Strokes are usually of two types:
- Hemorrhagic stroke: Here the blood vessel gets ruptured, which usually leads to brain bleeding.
- Ischemic stroke: This is caused due to a clot, and the blood vessel which carries blood to the brain gets blocked.
Both these types require equal attention and immediate action.
What are the ways to detect a Stroke?
If you do not know about the symptoms of stroke, then a FAST test from National Stroke Association can help you to recognise and act fast. You can also seek help from the best neurologist in Kolkata.
- F- Face: You need to observe the patient and ask them to smile. If one side is looking drooling, then it is a symptom of stroke.
- A- Arm: Ask the patient to raise both arms together. If one arm drifts downwards automatically, it is a clear sign of stroke.
- S- Speech: Try to talk to the person and ask them to reply. If they are unable to process your question or unable to say anything or make a strange sound, then this is a stroke.
- T- Time: If you observe all these symptoms, you must immediately call for help without waiting a second.
Do’s – When a person is suffering from stroke
If a person is suffering from a stroke then –
Call for help or request an ambulance
Immediately call the helpline number and inform them about the situation. Try to note down the time as soon as you see the symptoms. It is said that to reverse the symptoms of the developing threat, the treatment must start within 4.5 hours of the onset of the symptoms. Advanced therapies and surgeries can be the way out to ease the pressure that is building up in the blood vessels and brain.
Perform a CPR
If necessary, you must perform CPR. However, most patients do not need this. If you see that the person has become unconscious, check the breathing rate, whether it is quite abnormal, and then start CPR before the ambulance reaches the location. If you do not know about CPR, you must perform a repeated and steady chest compression.
Don’t allow the patient to sleep
If the patient is already a stroke survivor, then during the second stroke they might feel sleepy. Do not let the person go to sleep or lie down, talk to them continuously and keep them engaged until the ambulance reaches the location. The patient may feel tired even during the first stroke, but remember that if the person is allowed to sleep, then it can decrease the survival rate. At first, reach out to the primary doctor or the one where the patient usually goes for follow-up. Then, act according to the advice given.
Don’t’s – When a person is suffering from stroke
There are certain restrictions that must be maintained if a person is suffering from a stroke, such as-
Do not give any food or drink
The patient should not be given any kind of food or drink without consulting with the doctors. Stroke can also affect the ability to swallow, and so it can lead to choking or breathing problems. Along with that, it can also lead to chances of development of infections.
Do not give any over-the-counter medicines
You should avoid aspirin, the most recommended over-the-counter medicine to reduce pain. But, remember, the pain caused during stroke is either due to blood clots or vessels bursting. Aspirin acts as a blood thinner which increases the chances of damage. Mostly 80% of the strokes are ischemic, and 20% are hemorrhagic strokes, so without a CT scan, medicine should not be referred.
Never drive the patient to the hospital
Never drive a stroke victim to the hospital. If you find that somebody is severely affected by a stroke, then it is better to call an ambulance or inform the primary doctor. Ambulances have all the essential life-saving treatment facilities to respond to emergencies. So, by the time you drive the patient to the hospital, it might be too late for medications and treatment. Also, you must get information about the hospital and whether it has facilities to treat stroke.
What are the symptoms of stroke?
Strokes can be frightening, and you must always be prepared. It’s all about staying focused and taking immediate action. So, you need to inform the ambulance as quickly as possible to initiate the treatment.
Every minute counts when a person is suffering from a stroke. If it is left untreated, then it can lead to permanent damage to the brain. So, once you recognise any symptoms, take the patient immediately to the hospital and get an appointment with the best neurologist in Kolkata.
There are various of symptoms, such as –
- A drool on one side of the face.
- Difficulty lifting one hand to the full height or using only one hand.
- Difficult to move one leg or drag the leg while walking.
- Slurred speech, difficulty talking, thinking or taking any action.
- Poor vision or unable to see anything clearly.
- Dizziness, vertigo, imbalance in walking difficulty.
In certain cases, even severe headaches are also noticed, along with severe pain that flows from the right side of your neck. However, headache cannot be taken to be the potential sign of stroke because in most cases strokes are not accompanied by any kind of pain.
You might also notice that in certain situations, within a few minutes, the pain vanishes, but that does not mean you are going to postpone visiting the doctor. These are usually called mini-strokes. These should also be taken seriously as they are signs of severe underlying conditions that can lead to stroke in the future. If you are unable to distinguish whether it was a symptom of stroke, get the situation evaluated by a specialist at ILS Hospitals.
Why Would You See A Neurologist?
A neurologist is a medical expert who specializes in diagnosing and treating issues related to the brain, muscles, nerves, and spinal cord. Suppose you are experiencing symptoms related to the same that started appearing suddenly and are now causing a debilitating impact on your daily schedule. In that case, it’s the right time to visit the best neurologist in Kolkata.
Several symptoms can be tell-tale signs that you need a consultation with a neurologist for further testing and examination. Some of these symptoms might seem benign and common, but if they turn severe and are persistent, we would advise scheduling a visit with a neurologist as soon as possible.
1 – Headache
This is a common symptom but is aso highly ignored by most people. We all suffer from headaches; that’s common, but what gets concerning is when your headaches become so severe that you can’t function normally anymore.
Suppose you deal with headaches more than four times a month and pop over-the-counter medicines frequently to deal with these headaches. Also, if your headaches are fatiguing, you are dealing with migraines, or come with other neurological symptoms like nausea, dizziness, or a vision change, you need to schedule an appointment with a neurologist.
2 – Dizziness
If you have been experiencing vertigo or dizziness for more than a couple of days, you should get examined by a neurologist. You can experience dizziness due to several factors, such as high blood pressure, anxiety, stress, and imbalance in the inner ear. The best neurologist in Kolkata will perform a few neurological tests to make a correct diagnosis.
3 – Unexplained Seizures
Having a seizure is usually more subtle than what people think it to be, dropping on the ground and convulsing violently. Seizure symptoms can vary, but having any seizure is a concerning issue and must be examined immediately by a neurologist.
Some of the seizure symptoms include daydreaming spells where a person stops responding, shaking the body, disorientation, loss of bladder control, and stiffening of the body. A neurologist can examine you and diagnose whether the seizure is due to epilepsy or some other problems such as meningitis, stroke, or kidney failure. An untreated seizure can be harmful, leading to severe brain damage.
4 – Loss Of Sensation Or Weakness Of Muscles
Numbness or loss of sensation in any part of the body is usually harmless if it’s short-term. However, if they occur suddenly and persistently, you need to get the same examined by a neurologist. If you lose the sensation of touch, change in temperature, vibration or pain, a consultation with your doctor immediately is recommended.
Similarly, experiencing weakness of muscles after a hard workout or a physical activity is common and not harmful. But if you experience it for no reason or frequently, it’s a worrisome situation.
A neurologist will check several factors such as the strength of your handgrip, history of numbness in your family, how long you have been experiencing the symptoms, whether you are facing foot drop, is there lingering numbness/ weakness after an injury before he makes a diagnosis.
If you have been facing any of the above symptoms, it’s highly advised that you schedule a visit at https://www.ilshospitals.com/ with the best neurologist in Kolkata immediately. He will help identify the cause of the symptoms and make a treatment plan for you that can benefit you immensely.