Stroke is a general term for sudden onset of neurologic symptoms and includes both ischemic stroke (due to blockage of an artery) and hemorrhagic stroke (due to brain hemorrhage). According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) stroke is the third leading cause of death in the US. Every year about 800,000 people in the US have a stroke, about one every 40 seconds. Around 140,000 Americans die of stroke each year. Stroke is also a major cause of disability leaving patients with difficulty performing basic activities.
Stroke is a medical emergency – like a heart attack. If you think you or someone you know is having a stroke, call 9-1-1. For more information on recognizing a stroke visit the American Stroke Association website on Stroke Warning Signs. Quick action is important because if caught in time, clot-busting medications can be given by vein to reduce the long-term effects of stroke. Some strokes do not respond to these medications and may respond to more advanced treatment with catheters (long tubes inserted into an artery in the groin), balloons, and wires.
At MCR, we have two stroke interventional radiologists who are trained in treating acute stroke using the latest devices inserted into the blocked arteries in the brain. Of the hospitals we serve, both Sentara Norfolk General Hospital and Sentara Leigh Hospital are designated Primary Stroke Centers with Advanced Certification by The Joint Commission. Endovascular stroke interventions are performed at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital. Stroke can happen any time, day or night. Our stroke interventionalists are always available, 24/7.