Symptoms of a mini-stroke, or transient ischemic attack or TIA, include numbness or weakness in the face or extremities, speech problems, inability to understand others, dizziness and vision problems, according to Mayo Clinic. The symptoms are very similar to a regular stroke.
Numbness and weakness associated with strokes and mini-strokes often affect only one side of the body. Speech problems may include slurring or not being able to form words correctly. Vision disturbances may make it difficult to see out of one or both eyes. Double vision is also a potential symptom, explains Mayo Clinic. In addition to dizziness, mini-stroke victims may have difficulty balancing or walking.
Like with a regular stroke, a blood clot causes a mini-stroke. The primary difference is the length of time the symptoms last. The average length of a transient ischemic attack is one minute, with most not lasting more than five minutes, states the American Stroke Association. A mini-stroke does not normally cause permanent damage.
Because the symptoms of a regular stroke and mini-stroke are similar, getting medical help immediately is important. Waiting to see if the symptoms go away wastes precious time if the patient is experiencing a regular stroke, notes the American Stroke Association. Medical attention may also keep the patient healthy in the future. Approximately one-third of people who have a mini-stroke have a regular stroke in the next year.