When you think about having a stroke, you most likely picture becoming instantly paralyzed and unable to move one side of your body. However, strokes often have less obvious symptoms, which don’t signal something life-threatening could be wrong.
Unfortunately, if you have an ischemic stroke (caused by a clot disrupting blood flow in your brain) and you or your doctor don’t realize your symptoms quickly, you could die or have permanent paralysis. Quick and effective medical treatment often is the deciding factor between stroke recovery or disability or death.
So, if you or your loved one experiences any of these stroke symptoms, call 911. Then make sure emergency personnel evaluate the possibility you or a loved one had a stroke:
- Severe headaches with no known cause
- Vision changes or blurriness
- Trouble speaking or slurred speech
- Weakness in the face, such as a droopy eyelid or lip
- Confusion or difficulty understanding things
- Lack of balance or trouble walking
All these could signal you are having an ischemic stroke, a hemorrihagic stroke (when an artery in the brain bursts and bleeds into the brain) or a transient ischemic attack (TIA). While TIAs are a mini-stroke that generally have no lasting impairment, they do put people more at risk for having a more serious stroke.
In the case of an ischemic stroke, which account for 87% of strokes suffered, doctors can use clot-busting medicine to stop the stroke and limit its long-term effects. These medications are only effective though within hours of symptoms surfacing.
If your loved one had a stroke that a doctor misdiagnosed and then either led to a long-term disability or death, consult an experienced medical malpractice attorney. You may have case that’s worth pursuing in court, to compensate for a wrongful death or the care costs and lost wages of a disability.