What Are Some Treatments for a Brain Stroke?


Quick Answer

The only treatment with FDA approval for ischemic brain stroke, as of 2015, is tissue plasminogen activator, a dissolving agent, according to the American Stroke Association. In the case of hemorrhagic stroke, a catheterization or the surgical insertion of a clip are the two options available.

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Full Answer

Ischemic strokes occur when a blood vessel that supplies the brain develops a blockage, and these comprise about eight out of every nine cases of stroke, reports the ASA. Hemorrhagic stroke involves the rupture of a compromised blood vessel and the leakage of blood onto brain tissue. High blood pressure is the most frequent cause for this type of stroke, although aneurysms and arteriovenous malformations cause them as well.

The use of tissue plasminogen activator, or tPA, facilitates blood flow to the previously deprived area of the brain by dissolving the clot in the event of an ischemic stroke, explains Administered intravenously, tPA works best if given within three hours of the stroke. Catheterization is another possible option that allows doctors to work within the blood vessel and take out the clot. With a hemorrhagic stroke, catheterization also works to insert a coil and to avoid rupture. When surgery is necessary, the doctor applies a clip to the base of the aneurysm to keep further damage from occurring, notes the ASA.

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