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Stroke Rehabilitation - Overview

Does a stroke cause permanent problems?

A stroke damages parts of the brain that control different things in the body, such as speech and movement. But other parts of the brain can take over for the damaged areas. Many people are able to get back most of the skills and abilities they lost.

Some people do have permanent problems after a stroke. But more than half of people who have a stroke regain their ability to take care of themselves.1

How long does rehab take?

For most people, rehab is a lifelong process. The road to recovery can be long and frustrating, so keeping a positive outlook is key. Try everything you can to get better, and get relief from pain if you need to. Your stroke rehab team is there to help in as many ways as it can. A strong support network of family and friends is also very important.

You may recover the most in the first few weeks or months after your stroke. But you can keep getting better for years. It just may happen more slowly. And it may take a long time and a lot of hard work. Don't give up hope.

What else should you think about?

  • It is common to feel sad and hopeless after a stroke. It may be hard to deal with your emotions. Tell your rehab team how you feel. Get treatment for depression if you need it.
  • It is important to get the support you need. Let your loved ones help you. Get them involved in your treatment. Talk to others who have had a stroke, and find out how they handled problems.
  • A stroke affects your loved ones too. They may be as scared and worried as you are. Urge them to find a caregiver support group and learn ways to relieve their stress.
  • Medical insurance may not cover the rehab or devices you need after you leave the hospital. Have a caregiver check on Medicare or other programs.

Frequently Asked Questions

Learning about stroke rehabilitation:

Getting treatment:

Ongoing concerns:

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WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: October 26, 2012
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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