I heard that the stroke must be treated in time. How can I help my family to identify and implement first aid in time?
1. Cerebral Apoplexy, also known as stroke.
Stroke includes both the categories of hemorrhagic (cerebral hemorrhage) and ischemic (acute cerebral infarction). It is the disease with the highest fatality and disability rate and has become the three leading causes of death, cardiovascular disease, and malignant tumors. The elderly are a high-risk group for stroke. If family members can identify it in time, it can help reduce the mortality and disability rate of stroke.
2. For timely identification, keep in mind the typical symptoms of a stroke:
- Check whether the face is asymmetrical and the corners of the mouth are skewed;
- Check whether both hands are flat and weak and one arm cannot be lifted;
- Listen to the patient speak. Check whether the patient is showing any slurred speech.
3. In addition, there are some precursors of stroke, which can also help in the timely intervention and prevention of stroke. Typical ones are:
- Transient slurred speech or salivation, facial numbness.
- Numbness and weakness of limbs: sudden numbness and weakness of one limb (unilateral upper limb, unilateral lower limb), unstable standing, dizziness, possibly transient ischemic attack (TIA).
- Transient amaurosis (a dark spot in front of the eyes) or short-term blurred vision return to normal in a short time.
- Continuous yawning if there is no fatigue, lack of sleep, and other reasons, constant yawning may be a manifestation of chronic ischemia and hypoxia in brain tissue.
4. In the event of a stroke, follow these first aid steps:
- Stop all activity. Adjust the patient’s position: the patient lies on the pillow with the head tilted to one side; dentures and vomit should be removed to avoid airway obstruction.
- Immediately call the emergency service, briefly describe the condition on the phone, and request the dispatcher to coordinate the hospital treatment with thrombolytic/thrombectomy capability according to the urgency and distance of the situation.
- Family members must remember to record the time of the attack, then check the patient’s vital signs, and perform CPR immediately if breathing and heartbeat stop.
5. Thrombolysis should be done within 6 hours.
The time window for thrombolysis is 4.5 hours, and the golden time window for thrombectomy is 6 hours. Completion within 6 hours can enable 60% of patients to recover from stroke paralysis.
Even if you miss the above time window, you should still race against time for emergency treatment. The patient may have the possibility of thrombectomy within 24 hours. Do not give up.
6. After the stroke patient is sent to the hospital, the emergency neurology department should be referred.
Patients must undergo a physical examination, laboratory tests, carotid color Doppler transcranial Doppler, electrocardiogram, and imaging studies. The specific choice of thrombolysis or thrombectomy depends on the doctor. However, both methods have their advantages and indications.
7. After a stroke, do not give the patient any medicine or drink water. Anything ingested at this time may block the airway, and do not lift the patient, pat the back, or even shake the patient.
This may aggravate the condition. To determine if the patient is conscious, tap the shoulder and call out the name.
8. To prevent stroke, you must control the five risk factors of high blood pressure, hyperlipidemia, atrial fibrillation, smoking, and obesity.
If you control it well, you can reduce the incidence of stroke by 50%.
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