9 myths about stroke

  • Myth: In case of stroke, the patient cannot be transported from home to the hospital or from one hospital to anotherTruth: All stroke patients should be taken to a hospital as soon as possible, where they can receive the necessary care. Situations when transportation in the conditions of an “ambulance” can worsen the patient’s health condition occur very rarely. If the patient is in a poorly equipped hospital, the risks of transport should be compared with the risks of treatment in a hospital that does not have adequate resources (specialists, CT, laboratory, etc.).Myth: If the symptoms of stroke pass quickly, no further treatment is neededTruth: All patients who have suffered stroke need a consultation with a neurologist and an examination that will allow us to understand the cause of what happened, as well as necessary treatment and prevention under the supervision of a family doctor. This is the only way to reduce the risk of a second stroke by 50-80%.

    Myth: The more droppers, the better the treatment

    Truth: Quite often, drugs that are widely used for stroke in Ukraine and are administered with the help of droppers (medicines for “recovery” of the brain, so-called neuroprotectors, “vascular drugs”, antioxidants, antihypoxants, etc.) do not have scientifically proven effectiveness and are not used for the treatment of stroke in developed countries. Domestic standards and protocols for stroke treatment, approved by the Ministry of Health of Ukraine, clearly define the list of necessary drugs.

    Myth: Time heals. Disturbances caused by a stroke (weakness of an arm or leg, slurred speech, choking on food, double vision, etc.) will gradually disappear on their own

    Truth: The human brain has a certain ability to restore its work on its own, which leads to a decrease in disorders, but this does not happen in every patient, mostly with small lesions and usually not to the full extent. In order to achieve the maximum restoration of impaired functions and a full life, the absolute majority of patients with persistent post-stroke disorders (cannot walk, dress or wash themselves, etc.) need rehabilitation. Rehabilitation consists not of injections or drips, but of classes with a physical therapist, occupational therapist, and speech therapist, the purpose of which is to restore impaired functions and reduce the need for outside help. Such methods as bees, leeches, droppers with neuroprotectors do not have scientifically proven effectiveness and are not recommended for use.

    Myth: Stroke is caused by stress and there is nothing we can do to prevent it

    Truth: Today, experts are well aware of stroke risk factors. These include advanced age, poor lifestyle and health problems. Lifestyle factors that increase the risk of stroke include smoking, alcohol abuse, insufficient physical activity (less than 150 minutes per week), and obesity. Medical problems include high blood pressure (more than 140/90 mm Hg is the main threat, even if the patient feels well), diabetes, atrial fibrillation (increases the risk of stroke 5 times!), high cholesterol .

    Myth: In order to prevent a stroke, it is necessary to go to the hospital 1-2 times a year to dig or clean the vessels

    Truth: “Dip” has no scientifically proven benefits in stroke prevention. The recommendation to lie down to “dig in” can mean anything, but not science-based modern stroke prevention or treatment.


    Myth: If you have an increased risk of stroke (hypertension, heart disease), you should not go to the sauna or do sports

    Truth: Visiting a sauna, as long as it is not associated with alcohol consumption or severe dehydration, does not increase the risk of stroke. As for exercise, aerobic (dynamic) exercises (brisk walking, cycling, swimming, etc.) can be useful, but static exercise (strength exercises) should be avoided.

    Myth: If you suspect a stroke, you should wait until everything is over or see your family doctor or therapist

    Truth: Stroke is an emergency. If a person has a sudden change in speech, a distorted face, or an arm or leg on one side of the body starts to feel bad, you should immediately call 103. Today, there is an effective treatment for ischemic stroke (thrombolysis), but it is effective within 4.5 hours from the appearance of the first signs stroke

    Myth: It does not matter in which hospital you are treated for stroke, as long as the doctor is attentive and experienced

    Truth: A lot depends on the capabilities of the hospital. We are also talking about equipment (for example, a tomograph) and the availability of a laboratory, resuscitation, neurosurgery, narrow specialists (cardiologist, endocrinologist, urologist, surgeon, orthopedist, etc.), the organization of treatment in the department where the patient is, the level of professional training and experience of the medical team. The best results of stroke treatment are provided by a multidisciplinary hospital with a Stroke Unit. The difference of the Stroke Unit is not only the doctors who are well versed in stroke and the corresponding equipment, but also nurses with appropriate training, physical therapists, speech therapists, etc.