Definition and Causes

Stroke, or brain attack, is a disruption of blood flow to the brain. Brain cells and tissue deprived of oxygen and nutrients will begin to die within minutes.

Early treatment can minimize damage and potential long-term complications. Stroke is the fifth leading cause of death and a leading cause of disability.

Death rates have declined in the last 20 or 30 years, thanks to raised awareness of major risk factors-high blood pressure, smoking, and high cholesterol-and advancements in stroke treatment.

There are two main types of stroke: ischemic and hemorrhagic

In ischemic stroke, accounting for about 85 percent of all cases, a blood clot obstructs a vessel that supplies the brain. In hemorrhagic stroke, accounting for about 15 percent of cases, a broken blood vessel disrupts the flow to the brain.

Whatever the cause, symptoms of stroke include sudden dizziness, blurred or double vision, severe headache, vomiting, altered consciousness, and numbness, weakness, or paralysis on one side of the face or body.

Treatment with Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy

hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) can be prescribed as an adjunct to approved stroke therapies in the expectation that by increasing the circulation of oxygenated blood in the brain HBOT may help reduce the extent of brain damage from swelling and inadequate blood supply, and possibly speed recovery and rehabilitation.

HBOT has been approved for patients with intracranial abscess and acute traumatic ischemias on a similar medical basis.

There is not much clinical evidence to support this position and substantial further research is required to determine if HBOT should be endorsed for routine treatment of stroke patients.

Regardless of the above criteria the last existing data suggest that the chances of an individual with stroke to improve its general neurological condition remain high regardless of the years that have passed from the onset of disease.


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