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Misdiagnosing a stroke could lead to catastrophic results

On Behalf of | Feb 11, 2022 | Medical Malpractice

Missing a diagnosis could put a patient’s life at risk, which is why it’s so important that medical providers know what to look for when a patient comes in with the signs of a stroke. There are three kinds of strokes, so being able to identify which one a person is struggling with as well as the interventions that are needed is essential.

If a person who is having a stroke doesn’t receive care quickly, it’s possible that parts of their brain could die. In some cases, a stroke could result in death, and in others, debilitation.

Three kinds of strokes

There are three main kinds of strokes including:

  • Transient ischemic attacks, or mini-strokes
  • Ischemic strokes
  • Hemorrhagic strokes

In the majority of cases, people have ischemic strokes, which happen when blockages stop blood from delivering oxygen and nutrients to the brain. It’s common for blood clots to cause those blockages.

Why does the difference between strokes matter?

The difference matters because the treatments may not be the same. For example, someone who has transient ischemic attacks only has the blood flow blocked for a few minutes. However, that attack is a sign that another could happen. A TIA is still a medical emergency and may be caused by blood clots, too.

Hemorrhagic strokes are unrelated to ischemic-type strokes, because they happen when an artery in the brain ruptures or leaks blood. This places pressure on the brain and causes damage. Aneurysms and high blood pressure may lead to a hemorrhagic stroke. Symptoms may come on rapidly.

It’s important to identify the kind of stroke that has happened quickly, because the patient’s life may be at risk. While a TIA may resolve and give medical providers more time to treat the patient, it’s not necessarily the case for other kinds of strokes.

If your loved one suffers from a TIA and has their symptoms ignored or if they have an ischemic stroke and are misdiagnosed, they could suffer catastrophic consequences. If this happens, you may want to look into making a medical malpractice claim, so they or your family can get the compensation that you need for their injury or death.