Some effects of a brain stem stroke can include difficulty in breathing, swallowing and other functions and paralysis or weakness in the face and limbs, according to NYU Langone Medical Center. Some victims of a brain stem stroke lose their balance or lose sensation.
More effects of this type of stroke include impaired vision and hearing as well as vertigo. The victim may be paralyzed to the point where he suffers "locked-in syndrome," where he cannot communicate with the outside world. He may also slip into a coma, advises NYULMC.
A person who suffers a brain stem stroke may not experience weakness or paralysis on just one side of the body, which happens in a stroke that affects one side of the brain, according to the American Stroke Association. Instead, he may experience changes in consciousness and slurred speech; however, some patients with a brain stem stroke, or brain stem infarction, do experience weakness or numbness on only one side of the body, claims Drugs.com.
The person can also experience pain in the eye, jerky movements of the eye, or pupils that are of different sizes, says Drugs.com. Because the brain stem controls so many vital bodily functions, brain stem infarctions are especially dangerous and may be hard to recover from completely.