In observance of World Stroke Day (October 29, 2016), Dr. Robert Rosenwasser, President of the Vickie and Jack Farber Institute for Neuroscience at Jefferson Health; Dr. Larami MacKenzie, Associate Director of Neurocritical Care at Abington-Jefferson Health; and Dr. Gerald Wydro, Chair of Emergency Medicine at Aria-Jefferson Health, participated in an ABC News Tweet Chat moderated by chief health and medical editor Dr. Richard Besser. Here are the highlights:
- A stroke is a lack of blood supply to brain tissue or a bursting of a brain artery.
- A stroke can happen at any age, though are less common in younger people; most strokes in younger people are caused by bleeding in the brain, whereas in older people they are more commonly caused by blockages in brain arteries.
- If you think you (or a friend or family member) are having a stroke, it’s important to “Think F.A.S.T.”
- Time to treatment can greatly impact the outcome of a stroke. It’s best to call 911 immediately if you or a loved one is experiencing symptoms of a stroke. Paramedics can call ahead to the hospital so the patient can go directly to receive a CT scan.
- You can decrease your risk of stroke by modifying lifestyle: healthy diet; moderate exercise; controlling blood pressure, diabetes and know your family history.
- Smoking cessation is crucial to preventing vessel disease, and preventing aneurysm rupture which can lead to a stroke.
- Stroke is a treatable disease. Strokes caused by blockages are often treated with clot-busting drugs; those caused by ruptures often need surgical/endovascular intervention.