After a stroke, you probably have a lot of questions and concerns about how -- and even if -- you will recover. When will you be able to move your arms? Is your independent life gone forever?
It's difficult to predict to what degree someone will recover after a stroke, says Randie M. Black-Schaffer, MD. Schaffer is medical director of the Stroke Program at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital in Boston. "How quickly a patient recovers in the first few weeks," she says, "can give us an indication of...
A stroke usually happens suddenly but may occur over hours. For example, you may have mild weakness at first. Over time, you may not be able to move the arm and leg on one side of your body.
Symptoms of an ischemic stroke (caused by a blood clot) vary from one person to another. But symptoms usually occur in the side of the body opposite from the side of the brain where the clot occurred. For example, a stroke in the right side of the brain affects the left side of the body.
Symptoms of a stroke may be so minor that they are ignored or go unnoticed. Some people have symptoms that go away after a short time. This could be caused by a transient ischemic attack, or TIA. A TIA is a warning sign that a stroke may soon follow.
The symptoms of a hemorrhagic stroke (caused by bleeding in the brain) are usually the same as those from a blood clot. But you also may have other symptoms, such as: