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Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA) - Topic Overview

Your doctor will start you on medicines to help prevent a stroke. You may need to take several medicines.

If tests show that the blood vessels (carotid arteries) in your neck are too narrow, you may need a procedure to open them up. This can help prevent blood clots that block blood flow to your brain.

After you have had a TIA, you are at risk for having another TIA or a stroke. But you can make some important lifestyle changes that can reduce your risk of stroke and improve your overall health.

  • Manage high blood pressure or high cholesterol by working with your doctor.
  • Manage diabetes. Keep your blood sugar levels within a target range.
  • If your doctor recommends that you take aspirin or a blood thinner, take it. This can help prevent a stroke.
  • Take your medicine exactly as prescribed. Call your doctor if you think you are having a problem with your medicine.
  • Don't smoke or allow others to smoke around you.
  • Limit alcohol to 2 drinks a day for men and 1 drink a day for women.
  • Stay at a healthy weight. Being overweight makes it more likely that you will develop high blood pressure, heart problems, and diabetes. These conditions make a stroke more likely.
  • Do activities that raise your heart rate. Get at least 30 minutes of exercise on most days of the week. Walking is a good choice. You also may want to do other activities, such as running, swimming, cycling, or playing tennis or team sports.
  • Eat heart-healthy foods. These include fruits, vegetables, high-fiber foods, fish, and foods that are low in sodium, saturated fat, trans fat, and cholesterol.

Learning about TIA:

Being diagnosed:

Getting treatment:

Ongoing concerns:

Living with TIA:

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: March 12, 2014
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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