Thursday, September 13, 2012

Young people have strokes, too

Mine happened at the ripe old age of 39. Way too young? No. It does happen. And, sadly, for people who are as "young" as I were, strokes too often can be misdiagnosed and therefore not treated properly.

Check out this article titled Too young to have a stroke? Think again:
Although a vast majority of strokes occur in people over age 65 (the risk is 30 to 50 per 1,000 in this age group), 10 percent to 15 percent affect people age 45 and younger (a risk of 1 in 1,000). A study by doctors at the Wayne State University-Detroit Medical Center Stroke Program found that among 57 young stroke victims, one in seven were given a misdiagnosis of vertigo, migraine, alcohol intoxication, seizure, inner ear disorder or other problems — and sent home without proper treatment.
“Although young stroke victims benefit the most from early treatment, it must be administered within four and a half hours,” said Dr. Seemant Chaturvedi, a neurologist at Wayne State who directs the program and led the study. “After 48 to 72 hours, there are no major interventions available to improve stroke outcome.”
“Symptoms that appear suddenly, even if they seem trivial, warrant a meticulous work-up,” he added.
Stroke recognition needs improvement - even and especially among trained health professionals. It's important to remember: Young people can have strokes, too.

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