Successive awareness campaigns have done a great job of alerting people to the early signs of strokes.
Many people are aware of the need to recognise the signs and act FAST, as acting FAST saves lives and ensures a better chance of recovery.
‘FAST’ in this sense refers to the signs of a person having suffered a stroke, those being Facial drooping, Arm weakness and Speech problems, with these signs indicating that it is Time to call the emergency services.
Every year there are about 152,000 strokes in the UK. That’s around one every three and a half minutes. Most people affected are over 65, but anyone can have a stroke, including children and babies.
For many people a stroke happens suddenly and without warning, and often there is little time to prepare for one, however there can be an early indicator that you may suffer from a stroke and with the correct diagnosis and treatment it can be possible for a full blown stoke to be prevented.
A full stroke occurs when the blood supply to a part of the brain is completely cut off, however with a transient ischaemic attack (TIA), more commonly known as a mini-stroke, the brain’s blood supply is interrupted for a very brief time.
TIAs have similar symptoms to strokes, however additional symptoms can include:
Unlike a stroke the symptoms are temporary, usually lasting between a few minutes and a few hours with a full recovery within 24 hours. However, a TIA is a sign that part of the brain is not getting enough blood and sufferers may be at risk of a more serious stroke in the future. For this reason it is important to seek immediate medical assistance.
Like a stroke, a TIA is caused by a blockage cutting off the blood supply to part of the brain. The only difference being that with a TIA the blockage is temporary and will either dissolve on it’s own or move. The blockage is usually a blood clot but there can be other causes.
If a TIA is urgently investigated, correctly diagnosed and then correctly treated then the risk of the sufferer going on to experience a full stroke can be significantly reduced. It is thought that around 10,000 strokes can be prevented every year in the UK if TIAs and minor strokes are treated in time.
In the event that you or a member of your family have experienced a TIA that has gone undiagnosed and therefore the underlying cause has not been addressed and you have gone on to experience a full stroke then you may have a claim.