Combatting a Stroke: What You Need to Know About Early Detection
Jun 1, 2013
is the third-leading killer and the leading cause of long-term
disability in the U.S., according to the American Heart Association. But
too often, stoke victims don’t realize they are having a medical
emergency. Knowing the signs and getting treatment as quickly as
possible can lessen or prevent long-term effects and impairment.
Paul K. Kaiser, MD, (pictured right), and Medical Director of the University Medical Center of Princeton at Plainsboro’s (UMCPP) Stroke Center,
says that there are many different symptoms for a stroke. The signs of a
stroke can include any one or a combination of the following:
- Sudden numbness or weakness in the face, arms, or legs, especially on one side of the body or in multiple limbs
- Sudden trouble speaking or understanding, confusion
- Sudden vision problems in one or both eyes Dizziness, loss of balance, or sudden trouble walking
- Severe headache with no obvious cause
“If you are not sure whether you or someone you
are with is having a stroke, it’s best to go straight to an ER to be
safe,” says Dr. Kaiser, who is board certified in clinical
neurophysiology, neurology and vascular neurology.
According to the New England Journal of Medicine, the recommended
treatment for a stroke is tissue Plasminogen Activator (tPA). If a blood
vessel is blocked, blood supply to part of the brain is cut off and can
cause a stroke; tPA can break up the clot to allow for renewed blood
flow. While some other treatments, such as endovascular therapy, have
been lauded as improved techniques, new research shows that tPA is still
the most effective treatment for preventing long-term disabilities.
more information on UMCPP’s continuum of stroke care, please call
UMCPP is a state-designated Primary Stroke Center,
with comprehensive stroke treatment, including tPA, and recovery
protocol to care for patients. The Center for Emergency Care allows for
quick diagnosis, Acute Rehabilitation provides physical, occupational,
speech, and psychological therapy, and Princeton HomeCare and the
Outpatient Rehabilitation Network provide assistance to patients after
they have left the hospital.