New Potential for Preventing a Stroke

New Potential for Preventing a Stroke

Strokes are a serious source of disability amongst senior citizens, but the damage that they can do has been drastically reduced over the last few decades. While it is true that they still have the potential to be fatal, the mortality rate has gone down in a big way. Plus, more and more people are able to live complete lives after suffering from a stroke thanks to advances in medicine and technology. This is a very good thing for senior citizens, especially those who are at a higher risk of suffering from one of these. A new method of preventing strokes is being formulated, and this new potential treatment holds a lot of promise.

Carotid artery disease is a major source of strokes, and with ultrasound scanning to examine these patients, the clots that can lead to oxygen flow blockages can more readily be detected and remedied. The problem here is that clots can form within the carotid artery of the neck and break off. They then travel toward the brain where they can slow down or block oxygenated blood flow. In the past, simple anti-platelet drugs, like aspirin, were used to help prevent this from happening, but they are not always effective and the new method looks like it will be much more complete at helping out.

Previously, one of the big roadblocks to preventing a stroke is that doctors had trouble pinpointing just who was at high risk of having a stroke and who was not. Ultrasound scanning is really easy-it’s what they use to show images of fetuses within expecting mothers-and it is not overly expensive to do. Senior citizens that are at high risk can easily and speedily be identified and steps can be taken toward helping these people as much as possible.

Strokes occur when the blood cells that carry oxygen to the brain are blocked. Essentially a stroke is when proper levels of oxygen are not received by brain cells. This can cause speech problems, disability, or even death. Luckily, stroke treatment is getting better and better and this new prevention method is just one example of this.

The average age of people having a stroke is getting younger, and this is a major cause for alarm. The other problem that our society is facing is that the average age of a U.S. citizen is getting older, and the older you become, the higher your likelihood of having a stroke becomes. The coupling of these two things is likely going to see the number of strokes in our nation go up. Advances in this field are going to be necessary if we want to protect our family members and friends. Thankfully, this is becoming easier thanks to outstanding medical professionals.