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What causes numbness after a stroke?

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Quick Answer

Numbness, which is just one of many symptoms of pain following a stroke, is caused by the damage to the brain during the stroke, according to WebMD. The severity of numbness, tingling sensations or pain depends upon the extent of the brain damage, the portion of the brain that was damaged, and the side of the brain affected by the stroke. A patient's health condition prior to the stroke can also contribute to the damage or symptoms following the stroke.

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Full Answer

Post-stroke symptoms affect movement and muscles that can cause numbness, chronic or periodic pain, and tingling within the limbs, according to WebMD. It may also be difficult to complete daily tasks such as grasping objects or even walking, due to weakness on one or both sides of the body. Muscle stiffness is common and may require nerve block treatments to control spasms. Some patients also experience sensitivity to hot or cold temperatures or touch following a stroke accompanied by numbness.

Chronic pain that can include tingling, numbness or weak-feeling muscles is known as central post-stroke pain, explains the National Stroke Association. The brain damage distorts messages sent from the body to the brain when reacting to stimuli, sensations and temperatures. Normal touching becomes uncomfortable and painful.

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