Ischemic stroke

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By Brian Silver MD

Stroke is the leading cause of serious long-term disability in the United States and the fourth leading cause of death. Nearly 90% of all strokes are of the ischemic variety. In this clinical article, Dr. Brian Silver reviews the history, clinical manifestations, risk factors, and pathology of ischemic stroke. Readers will learn about the important advances made in diagnosis, acute treatment, and prevention of stroke. Readers will also learn about advancements in recovery from stroke.

Key Points

  • Nearly 90% of all strokes are of the ischemic variety.
  • Important stroke risk reduction strategies include: antiplatelets, anticoagulants, arterial revascularization, blood pressure medications, cholesterol medications, cessation of smoking, diet modification, and exercise.
  • Acute treatment of ischemic stroke includes thrombolytic therapy within 4.5 hours, antiplatelet therapy within 48 hours, and stroke unit hospitalization.
  • Stroke recovery treatments include physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and constraint-induced movement therapy.