Mumbai: Stroke Cases on Rise in Middle-Aged Adults, Explain Doctors

Mumbai: Stroke Cases on Rise in Middle-Aged Adults, Explain Doctors
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Amid the coronavirus pandemic, stroke cases in middle-aged adults are rising at an alarming rate. Some of the factors such as diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, smoking, and alcohol can be the culprits behind the stroke. It is the need of the hour to recognize the signs and symptoms of stroke such as slurred speech, droopy face, and arm weakness, and seek timely intervention.

A stroke is seen when the high blood pressure tends to rupture the blood vessels in the brain or even when cholesterol deposits narrow the walls of blood vessels blocking the blood supply to the brain. A stroke can be classified into ischemic stroke caused by blockage of an artery and Hemorrhagic stroke that occurs due to bleeding.

 “Certain factors such as diabetes, unmanaged hypertension, heart disease, cholesterol, smoking, drinking alcohol, trauma due to an accident, bulges at weak spots in the blood vessel walls (aneurysms), a family history of stroke, lack of exercise, and illicit use of drugs can lead to higher incidences of stroke in age group of 40-50,” said Dr Anil Venkatachalam, Neurologist, Zen Multispeciality Hospital, Chembur.

““Now, there is an increasing trend of stroke in the age group of 35-55 due to poor lifestyle choices like no physical activity, sleep apnea, consumption of fatty foods, and stress. Certain inflammatory conditions termed as vasculitis or cardiac conditions like patent foramen ovale can specifically cause stroke in young. The signs and symptoms of a stroke are easy to remember with mnemonic “BEFAST” B: Sudden loss of balance or coordination. E: Blurred or double vision or sudden, persistent vision trouble. F: Facial drooping. A: Arm weakness. S: Slurred speech. T: Timely treatment. Many people have suffered from a stroke after recovering from a COVID-19 infection. A stroke can lead to severe complications such as paralysis or loss of muscle movement, difficulty in talking or swallowing, memory loss, and depression due to dependency on others. A stroke leads to lifelong disability. One’s quality of life will be poor and there will be higher mortality and morbidity rates.  Timely treatment with IV thrombolysis within 4.5 hours or Mechanical thrombectomy within 6 hours in case of large vessel occlusion is a key to managing acute ischemic stroke within window period. Although, stroke patients will take some time to recover with good Physiotherapy, in order to prevent another stroke antiplatelet agents must be started as soon as possible in ischemic stroke” said Dr Pavan Pai, Consultant Interventional Neurologist, and Stroke Specialist, Wockhardt Hospitals Mira Road.

“Stroke rehabilitation is important for the patients as it offers different therapies to help with movement, and speech and relearn all the skills that are damaged due to stroke. So, rehab can help you physically, emotionally, and socially. Regular check-ups help one to monitor fluctuations in blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar levels. Taking medication, exercising daily, maintaining an optimum weight, quitting smoking and alcohol, eating a well-balanced diet, and reducing the salt intake can help prevent stroke,” concluded Dr Anil.

“Now, there is an increasing trend of stroke in the age group of 40-55 due to a sedentary lifestyle. A large number of people fail to exercise daily, eat well, get stressed, do not control their blood pressure, blood sugar, and cholesterol levels, and fall prey to fatal problems like a stroke or a heart attack. Not taking proper care during the pandemic can also invite a stroke. A stroke can lead to permanent disability or even death. Timely detection and prompt treatment can help to minimize the risk of complications related to stroke,” said Dr Chandranath Tiwari, Neurosurgeon, Apollo spectra Mumbai.

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