When blood supply to your brain is reduced or blocked, a stroke occurs, and when it does, it’s a medical emergency. The faster you’re treated, the better chance you have for recovery. After a stroke, Dr. Christopher Sinclair, neurologist with Suffolk Brain and Nerve in Port Jefferson Station, New York, can work with you to develop a recovery management plan and then oversee your rehabilitation program. If you or a loved one has had a stroke, call the office or book an appointment online.
There are two types of stroke, and 80 percent of the time, they happen because of blocked arteries, called ischemic strokes. These result from blood clots either in the arteries supplying the brain (thrombotic stroke), or from a clot that forms elsewhere in the body but breaks away and lodges in a narrow artery closer to your brain (embolic stroke).
Hemorrhagic stroke is less common, occurring when a blood vessel in your brain ruptures, due to hypertension, aneurysms, or heavy use of blood thinners that prevent natural clotting. Intracerebral hemorrhage occurs within the brain, damaging brain tissue and depriving other cells beyond the leak of fresh blood flow. Subarachnoid hemorrhage results in blood filling the space between your brain and skull, often accompanied by a severe headache that starts suddenly.
A transient ischemic attack, or TIA, is a temporary event that’s sometimes called a ministroke. The symptoms are similar to a regular ischemic stroke, but the effects are temporary and you don’t suffer permanent tissue damage. Even though the symptoms are short-lived, seek medical attention since there’s no way to distinguish a TIA from an ischemic stroke by symptoms alone.
Classic signs of stroke or TIA include:
When parts of your brain are damaged in a stroke, treatment focuses on recovering any functions you lose. Dr. Sinclair typically recommends vigorous rehabilitation programs that consider your overall health and the amount of disability resulting from the stroke.
Your stroke recovery will be unique, and not everyone responds to therapy in the same way. The priority of rehabilitation therapy is typically to restore the skills and functions necessary for independent living.