Each year in the United States, more than 800,000 people suffer stroke, which is a leading cause of permanent disability in adults.
There are two types of stroke, both of which harm or kill brain cells: ischemic, in which an interruption or blockage of a blood vessel supplying blood to the brain denies brain cells oxygen and nutrients, and hemorrhagic, in which bleeding from a ruptured blood vessel in the brain causes pressure build up within the brain that can cut off blood supply or kill brain tissue.
Vascular diseases that can also affect the brain by limiting blood supply include moyamoya, vasculitis, and fibromuscular dysplasia.
The symptoms of a stroke include sudden numbness or weakness, confusion, dizziness, headache or trouble speaking, seeing, or walking. The results of stroke may include paralysis or weakness, cognitive problems, emotional control problems, and depression.
There are three treatment stages for stroke: prevention, therapy during an acute stroke, and post-stroke rehabilitation. Extensive research is ongoing with respect to improving all three.
How can we prevent strokes from occurring?
When strokes occur what is the best treatment?
Can we develop neuro-protective therapies for people having strokes that preserve brain function?