Stroke And Post Stroke Care

One of the most important components of Post Stroke Care is trying to build mobility in a patient.

A stroke takes place when the requisite amount of blood flow does not reach the human brain. Because of this, brain tissues are unable to receive adequate amount of oxygen and other nutrients which are required for normal function of the brain. Brain cells start dying because of the above. Due to the fact that early diagnosis and treatment plays a crucial role in minimizing brain damage and in reducing the onset of any associated complications, a stroke is considered as a medical emergency. 

Symptoms which may indicate the occurrence of a stroke:

- Associated complications of speaking and comprehension

- Limb paralysis

- Reduction in vision in one or both eyes

- Headaches

- Trouble in conducting activities of daily living like walking

Lifestyle Issues that can cause a stroke:

- Obesity

- Physical inactivity

- Heavy or binge drinking

- Use of illegal substances


Medical Issues that can cause a stroke:

- High blood pressure

- High cholesterol

- Diabetes

- Obstructive sleep apnea

- Family history of stroke, cardiac arrest or transient ischemic attack

A stroke, if not treated timely may present associated complications and disabilities. These disabilities can be either temporary or permanent in nature. The determining factor of the nature of the disability is the time period during which blood flow was disrupted to the brain and the area where the disruption of blood flow took place.

Associated complications arising from a stroke may be of the following types:

- Paralysis or loss of muscle movement

- Difficulty talking or swallowing

- Memory loss or thinking difficulties

- Emotional Problems

- Pain

- Behavioural changes and reduced self-care ability

Post stroke care

Taking care of a patient post a stroke involves the development of a care plan which focusses primarily on the following:

Patient mobility

One of the most important components of Post Stroke Care is trying to build mobility in a patient. Every patient requires a tailor-made approach towards mobility building and it can help the patient in resuming their Activities of Daily Living (ADL’s). 

Prevention of recurrences

A recurrence of stroke is one of the major worries when working with a post stroke patient. Certain studies state approximately 15 per cent of stroke patients experience a recurrence within 24 months and about 11 per cent experience a recurrence within 12 months. Prevention of the recurrence of a stroke forms a major part of Post Stroke Care plans.

Prevention of illnesses associated with post stroke

Stroke patients may experience certain other associated illnesses after the occurrence of a stroke. A few of the common illnesses are Depression, Cognitive Decline, etc. To make sure that these illnesses do not happen, it is essential to conduct timely and routine monitoring of the patient condition and vitals. In case the caregivers observe any deviations, the reporting and consequent treatment should take place in a timely and effective manner.

Pain management

Pain is one of the most common issues experienced by the patients who have experienced a stroke. Some of the types of pain that a patient may experience are central post-stroke pain, spasticity associated pain, complex regional pain syndrome and shoulder subluxation. Effective pain management is an integral part of the care plan of the patient.

Prevent the development of bed sores

Post a stroke, there is a high probability of the patient being bedridden for a long period of time. During this time period, a common associated issue that a patient may face is the development of bedsores or pressure ulcers. Bed sores need to be avoided during post stroke care. There are multiple methodologies that are used to treat the same. The care plan of a patient takes into account the severity/grade of the bed sore. One of the most common and useful techniques is to provide positioning to the patient on a regular basis. 


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