Monday, June 16, 2008

Information on Stroke

picture courtesy of Google Images

Since my husband suffered this cerebrovascular accident or stroke for short, my family learnt a lot about this disease and we learnt to be more health conscious. We are now eating healthy foods, more fruits and vegetables and mostly we buy food items with the Healthier Choice label by the Health Promotion Board.

Here are some information about stroke and stroke prevention courtesy of National Healthcare Group.

Stroke occurs because part of the brain is damaged by lack of blood supply. The lack of blood supply to the brain may be due to blockage or bursting of a brain blood vessel called an artery. The lack of blood supply leads to the symptoms of stroke. About 10% of stroke victims die from stroke. Many of thosee who survive are left severely disabled by the stroke.

Risk Factors:

1. 40 years old and above- but even younger people can get a stroke.

2. Male

3. High blood pressure


5. High cholesterol

6. Diabetes mellitus

7. Irregular heartbeat (atrial fibrillation)

8. previous stroke or TIA (mini stroke)

9. Excessive alcohol use.

My husband is not smoking, not drinking alcohol, exercises every day, and not diabetic, how come he became a stroke victim? From what I gathered from hospital information and the doctors themselves, stroke is hereditary and is the greatest factor.

As highlighted in , here are the risk factors for stroke that can't be changed.
Age - The chance of having a stroke more than doubles for each decade of life after age 55. While stroke is common among the elderly, a lot of people under 65 also have strokes.
Heredity (family history) and race - Your stroke risk is greater if a parent, grandparent, sister or brother has had a stroke. African Americans have a much higher risk of death from a stroke than Caucasians do. This is partly because blacks have higher risks of high blood pressure, diabetes and obesity.
Sex (gender) - Stroke is more common in men than in women. In most age groups, more men than women will have a stroke in a given year. However, more than half of total stroke deaths occur in women. At all ages, more women than men die of stroke. Use of birth control pills and pregnancy pose special stroke risks for women.

So if you have a family history of stroke, you need to be more conscious and well informed. I think, it is a responsibility of a family member who survived stroke to communicate and inform their children and siblings their own experience, like what they felt with this disease so as their loved ones can also prepare and reduce stroke risk.

Symptoms of stroke:

1. Weakness or numbness of one side of the body.

2. Slurred speech, difficulty in speaking.

3. Loss of vision, double vision

4. Unsteadiness in walking, uncoordinated movements

5.Giddiness together with one of the above symptoms

6. The worst headache in your life.

7. Loss of consciousness, coma.

Stroke prevention:

1. Early detection and treatment of high blood pressure.

2. Not smoking.

3. Early detection and treatment of high cholesterol.

4. Early detection and treatment of diabetes mellitus

5. Early detection and treatment of atrial fibrillation

6. Taking prrescribed medication for previous stroke/TIA

7. Limited alcohol intake

8. Adopting a healthy lifestyle.

My husband is taking his medication religiously. Aside from having his physiotherapy and doing his daily exercises, he also eat healthy foods now. I cook food that is less in sodium and less oil for him.

Some of the dishes I cooked for him are here

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