Stroke Archive


What is a silent stroke?

Most strokes are caused by a clot that blocks a blood vessel in the brain. Those that damage small areas of brain tissue that don't control any vital functions are known as silent strokes because they don't cause any noticeable symptoms.

Salty diet linked to narrowed arteries in the heart and neck

The more salt people eat, the greater their risk of clogged heart and neck arteries, a 2023 study suggests. Narrowed arteries (atherosclerosis) can lead to heart attacks and strokes.

COVID-19's cardiac legacy: An update

COVID-19 may increase the risk of cardiovascular problems, including heart attack, stroke, pulmonary embolism, atrial fibrillation, and heart failure, up to a year after the infection. But vaccination appears to lower these risks. Getting just one dose of a COVID vaccine may halve the risk of myocarditis, a rare condition that causes inflammation of the heart muscle that can arise after viral infections.

Cannabis: A cardiovascular concern?

Marijuana use, which is rising among older adults, appears to heighten the risk of heart-related problems. Cannabis is known to increase heart rate and blood pressure, although high doses can have the opposite effect. Marijuana use has been implicated in causing heart attacks, atrial fibrillation, stress cardiomyopathy, and arteritis.

When you take these popular pain relievers, proceed with caution

Over-the-counter and prescription drugs known as NSAIDs pose a risk to the cardiovascular system. They include over-the-counter drugs such as ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil) and prescription drugs such as celecoxib (Celebrex). NSAIDs can cause the kidneys to hold on to salt and water, which tends to raise blood pressure. They also appear to affect the inner linings of blood vessels and alter other blood substances in a manner that promotes blood clots. People who need these pain-relieving medications should take the smallest dose for the shortest possible period of time.

Can a smart watch diagnose a heart attack?

ECG readings taken with a smart watch may be just as accurate as a traditional ECG done in a medical setting. But the notion of using a smart watch to diagnose a heart attack is still years away. One main reason: obtaining an ECG with a smart watch requires carefully holding the back of the watch on the wrist and at eight specific locations on the chest and abdomen. Quality control and regulatory issues are other important hurdles that need to be addressed. But experts believe improved smart watches with enhanced diagnostic ability may be on the market within a decade.

Taking fewer daily steps still offers protection from heart problems

People who take an average of 4,500 steps each day may have a lower risk of heart disease, stroke, and heart failure than those who take less than 2,000 steps per day.

How to recognize and respond to a "warning" stroke

A transient ischemic attack (TIA) can cause a range of unsettling symptoms, including slurred speech or arm weakness. The symptoms appear suddenly but usually last less than five minutes, which is why TIAs are often ignored or missed. However, two of every five people with a suspected TIA who get an appropriate brain imaging test find out that they actually had a stroke. Recognizing the symptoms and seeing emergency care right away is vital. The mnemonic BE-FAST (which stands for balance, eyes, face, arms, speech, and time) was designed to help people identify the symptoms of a TIA or stroke and to act quickly.

Sweet surrender: Added sugar linked to higher heart risk

Diets high in free sugar—which includes sugar added to processed foods and drinks as well as the sugar in syrups, fruit juice, and honey—are linked to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease.

Erectile dysfunction drugs linked to lower risk of heart problems

Otherwise healthy men treated with prescription drugs used to treat erectile dysfunction had a lower risk of heart attacks, strokes, or death from heart-related causes.

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