What Symptoms Should You Look for After a Stroke?


Quick Answer

Impaired vision, paralysis, memory loss, speech problems and behavioral changes are all potential effects of a stroke, says the American Stroke Association. A stroke usually occurs in a specific part of the brain, and because each part controls specific functions, the effects of a stroke are dependant on where the stroke occurs and how much tissue is damaged.

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Full Answer

The brain is divided into three primary areas: the cerebrum, the cerebellum and the brainstem, explains Johns Hopkins Medicine. A stroke that damages the right side of the cerebrum may cause problems with depth perception and directions, difficulty recognizing body parts, paralysis or weakness on the left side of the body, memory problems and impulsive or inappropriate behavior. A stroke that affects the left side can result in impaired speech, weakness and paralysis on the right side of the body, reduced analytical and organizational skills, difficulties with reading and writing and uncertain or cautious behavior.

Strokes that affect the cerebellum are not as common, but may produce severe physical effects such as dizziness, headaches, nausea or vomiting and problems with coordination and walking, notes Johns Hopkins Medicine. The brainstem controls many fundamental bodily functions and when affected by a stroke the consequences may include problems with the heart and lungs, loss of coordination and balance, problems regulating body temperature, coma and difficulties with speaking and eating. Brainstem strokes may be fatal.

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