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Stroke Treatment

Drug therapy - Drug therapy is a relatively recent approach to the treatment of stroke, and a tremendous amount of research is under way to find effective new drugs that can minimize stroke damage.

Clot dissolving treatment, tissue plasminogen activator (TPA) - This is a major advance in medical therapy for acute strokes caused by blood clots. A risk of brain haemorrhage accompanies use of the drug. TPA is effective only if given promptly. The therapy should only be started after a CT brain scan has shown that there is no evidence of brain haemorrhage. As yet TPA treatment is rarely given in Ireland.

Acute hospital care and rehabilitation - For stroke patients suffering loss of speech, movement, impaired thought processes or loss of feeling, rehabilitation is possible with the assistance of physiotherapists, speech and language therapists, occupational, and other therapists.

Surgery - Carotid Duplex ultrasound test can help a vascular surgeon advise people with either TIA or mild stroke whether surgery to the carotid artery in the neck would further protect against further TIA or stroke. When a neck artery has become partially blocked, surgery might be used to remove the build-up of the fatty deposits. This procedure called carotid endarterectomy is performed by a vascular surgeon.

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