• The most common symptoms just before a stroke
  • People’s susceptibility to stroke varies
  • Study brings breakthrough in early detection

Strokes are one of the leading causes of death in developed countries. They are also often the leading cause of disability and disability in adulthood. Estimates of the Medical journal According to up to 270,000 people suffer a stroke in Germany every year. A Dutch study now gives hope. There it says that a stroke patient is already ten years before the event is recognizable. The experts published their results in Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery & Psychiatry.

Stroke Study: Subjects studied for almost 30 years

For almost 30 years, a team of researchers from the Erasmus MC University in Rotterdam examined 14,712 people. Between 1990 and 2016, the volunteers were repeatedly taken a series of mental and physical tests. Memory, language fluency and reaction times were analyzed. In addition, people should assess their personal skills in everyday matters such as washing, cooking, cleaning, and financial management.

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During the more than twenty-year study period, 1662 people suffered a stroke. The average age was 80 years. The analysis showed that those affected began to do significantly worse in the cognitive test in recent years than would have been usual for their age. This effect was already evident ten years before the onset of the stroke. Almost two to three years before the illness, there was also a negative trend in the way people did everyday things.

Stroke: who is particularly affected?

The study also makes a statement about the people who are particularly affected by strokes. According to the report, a trend was emerging with stroke rates particularly high in women, people with a low level of education, and people with a gene linked to Alzheimer’s disease.

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The consequences of the strokes continued to be a deterioration in cognitive abilities and increased restrictions in everyday activities.

“The accelerated decline in cognition and daily performance before a stroke suggests that people with a future stroke will experience an accumulation of damage within the brain years before the acute event,” explains Dr. Alis Heshmatollah from Erasmus MC University reports in an interview with the Daily Mail.

Warning signs just before a stroke: These symptoms are dangerous

In the case of a stroke, a few minutes can mean the difference between life and death. If there is a life-threatening emergency, it must be recognized in good time. The symptoms of a stroke usually come on suddenly and unannounced. The most common warning signs are:

  • Visual impairment: Restricting the field of vision, overlooking objects and people
  • Speech and comprehension disorders: Choppy language, twisted syllables, babbling, comprehension problems
  • Paralysis, numbness: Signs of paralysis on one side of the body, furry feeling, drooping corners of the mouth
  • Vertigo with unsteady gait: Spinning vertigo, vertigo, those affected feel like they are in a merry-go-round
  • Very severe headache: sudden severe headache, often with nausea or vomiting

You can find an extensive and detailed list of all warning signs here.

If you experience such symptoms alone or in combination, you should immediately call the emergency number 112! Stroke patients are treated in special wards – stroke units. There are stroke units in our region in Bamberg, Nuremberg, Erlangen, Forchheim Kulmbach, Bayreuth, Coburg, Lichtenfels, Würzburg, Schweinfurt and Bad Neustadt / Saale. Further information, checklists and tests for the risk of stroke are available at, for example www.schlaganfall-hilfe.de or www.dsg-info.de.

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