Essay - Strokes Cerebrovascular Accidents, Often Called Strokes, are Interruptions to the...


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Strokes

***** accidents, often called strokes, are interruptions to the blood flow in ***** brain. They can be caused by sudden blockage of a blood vessel (ischemic stroke), or rupture of ***** blood ***** (hemorrhagic stroke). Strokes are medical emergencies that can cause coma, paralysis, muscle weakness, memory, speech/language or other brain function problems (5). Immediate emergency treatment helps ensure the best possible outcome f***** a patient who has had a stroke. Two thirds of all ***** occur in people over the age of 65 (5), and it is the third most common cause of death in ***** United States (Dougherty, 1998). They ***** a major ***** of disability as well (Byington et. al., 2000).

Ischemic *****s can have several causes. Sometimes an embolism, or blood clot, forms in one part of the body and travels to the ***** where it blocks a small ***** vessel. Thrombosis, or artery *****, can also cut off blood *****, when a ***** blood clot ***** on ***** arterial plaque. Most thrombotic strokes are caused ***** the combination of blood ***** narrowing and a clot. Hem*****rh*****gic strokes occur when a blood vessel in the brain ruptures. These strokes can vary from very mild to major. They may be caused by high blood pressure, a we*****kness in the ***** *****, or a combination of both (*****).

The risk factors for stroke can be divided into two groups: controllable and uncontrollable. When a person h***** ***** uncontrollable risk factors, it *****comes more important for him her to control the ones that can be.

Un*****lable risk factors include

Age: The older the *****, the ***** likely they may have a *****.

Gender: more men than women have *****

Race: African-Americans and Hispanics have more strokes ***** Caucasians

Family history

Diabetes

History of a previous stroke

Controll*****ble risk factors:

High blood pressure

Heart disease, particularly atrial fibrillation. When blood collects in the heart ***** ***** of forming a blood clot incre*****ses.

***** cholesterol resulting in blood vessel blockage

Sleep apnea, which can cause spikes in blood pressure

*****, which damages blood vessels ***** raises blood pressure

Alcohol abuse

Obesity

Symptoms ***** a stroke include sudden we*****kness or feeling of numbness, especially on *****e side of the *****; sudden difficulty speaking or confusion; ***** vision disturbance in one or ***** eyes: difficulty walking, loss of balance ***** poor coordination, or a sudden and severe headache (Barker, 2001). Less commonly, the patient can develop sudden nausea ***** vomiting marked ***** rapid onset, which may ***** a fever; or ***** brief loss ***** consciousness, which can be as mild as an apparent fainting spell ***** as severe as convulsion or coma (5)

Emergency room nurses can provide a valuable first line of evaluation by using stroke checklists of symptoms and alerting the triage doctor if ***** suggest the possibility of a stroke. R*****pid diagnosis allows the medical team the most options for ***** whether it is drugs to dissolve the ***** or a carotid artery stent (Dougherty, 1998) to improve blood

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