Stroke# is one of the main causes of death in Australia and this can be lowered with lifestyle and avoidance of some common pain medications
STROKE on of the biggest causes of death and disability in Australia
Every second counts when seeking treatment for a stroke. When deprived of oxygen, brain cells begin dying within minutes. A stroke may cause paralysis, speech impairment, loss of memory and reasoning ability, coma or death. The incidence of stroke increases rapidly after age 55years and more so in men.
The most common type of stroke is known as an ischaemic stroke and nearly nine out of 10 strokes fall into this category. The culprit is a blood clot that obstructs a blood vessel inside the brain. The clot may develop on the spot or travel through the blood from elsewhere in the body.
There are clot-busting drugs that can curb brain damage, but they need to be used within three hours of the initial stroke symptoms. Once brain tissue has died, the body parts controlled by that area won't work properly.
The other type of stroke is Hemorrhagic strokes, these are less common but far more likely to be fatal. They occur when a weakened blood vessel in the brain bursts. The result is bleeding inside the brain that can be difficult to stop
What to do
If you think things are not right with someone use this quick FAST test
The F.A.S.T. test helps spot symptoms of stroke. It stands for:
Face. Ask for a smile. Does one side droop?
Arms. When raised, does one side drift down?
Speech. Can the person repeat a simple sentence? Does he or she have trouble or slur words?
Time. Time is critical. Call 000 immediately if any symptoms are present.
Help prevent stroke
Eating fish, stopping smoking, moderate exercise and lower salt intake and controlling blood pressure all lowers the risk of stroke.
Vitamin D Supplements may improve stroke outcome
Although the role of vitamin D in myocardial infarction and stroke is not fully understood vitamin D deficiency is a frequent condition in patients who suffer a stroke, and several studies suggested that it may be associated with a poorer prognosis. Also, low serum vitamin D is independently associated with larger ischemic infarct volume, and this may partially explain observed worse outcomes in ischemic stroke patients with poor vitamin D status
A recent Indian study found vitamin D deficiency has reached epidemic proportions with prevalence rates of 70-100% in the general population.
The results of this randomised clinical trial showed that there is a significant improvement in the stroke outcome after three months in patients who were supplemented with vitamin D3. Therefore screening for vitamin D deficiency in stroke patients is essential as vitamin D replenishment may improve the stroke outcome.
Fish oil may help prevent strokes
Omega-3 fatty acids are important for a number of bodily functions, including muscle activity, blood clotting, digestion, fertility, and cell division and growth. DHA is important for brain development and function. ALA is an “essential” fatty acid, meaning that people must obtain it from food or supplements because the human body cannot manufacture it.
Evidence suggests that increased consumption of omega 3 fatty acids from fish or fish-oil supplements, but not of α-linolenic acid, reduces the rates of all-cause mortality, cardiac and sudden death, and possibly stroke.
Also, in a meta analysis reported that a high intake of fish oil, 3 grams per day, may lower blood pressure especially in older and hypertensive subjects. Lowering BP reduces the risk of stoke.
Pain medication increases risk
Ibuprofen and any kind of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) could increase the risk of stroke and heart attack by 31 per cent according to a Danish study published in the March 2017 issue of the “European Heart Journal—Cardiovascular Pharmacotherapy,”
The FDA strengthens warning that NSAIDs including ibuprofen increase heart attack and stroke risk and this was reported in the Harvard Medical School's Harvard Health Blog
However, taking aspirin (100mg) in high risk people may lower the risk
Always ring 000 if you think you are having a stroke get help now.
Association between Admission Serum 25-Hydroxyvitamin D Levels and Functional Outcome of Thrombolyzed Stroke Patients. Journal Stroke Cerebrovasc Dis. 2016 Apr;25(4):907-13. doi: 10.1016/j.jstrokecerebrovasdis.2016.01.005. Epub 2016 Jan 28
Low Serum Vitamin D Is Independently Associated with Larger Lesion Volumes after Ischemic Stroke Journal of Stroke and Cerebrovascular Diseases Volume 24, Issue 7, July 2015, Pages 1555-1563
Role of Vitamin D in the Outcome of Ischemic Stroke- A Randomized Controlled Trial, Journal of Clinical & Diagnostic Research,11(2); 2017 Feb PMC5376887
n−3 Fatty acids from fish or fish-oil supplements, but not α-linolenic acid, benefit cardiovascular disease outcomes in primary- and secondary-prevention studies: a systematic review1,2,3 Am J Clin Nutr July 2006 vol. 84 no. 1 5-17
Blood pressure response to fish oil supplementation: metaregression analysis of randomized trials Journal of Hypertension: August 2002 - Volume 20 - Issue 8 - pp 1493-1499
Prev Cardiol. 2003 Winter;6(1):38-41.
NOTICE; This article is for educational purposes only and is not medical or treatment advice. Always talk to your healthcare practitioner/doctor about stoke treatment and prevention and follow their advice.