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What is a Stroke? 

A stroke is a brain attack. It is very serious, but many people recover and live healthy lives.  

A stroke happens when a blockage such as a clot blocks the blood flow to the brain, or when a burst blood vessel bleeds into the brain. Stroke can affect people at any age. 

The effects of stroke depend on which part of the brain is damaged and how severe. 


Signs and Symptoms 

Not all strokes are sudden and incapacitating. The FAST acronym is helpful to remember should you see someone with sudden numbness in:  “Face Arm Speech Take Action” 

What are the early signs of a mild Stroke? 

  • Sudden numbness or weakness in face, arm, or leg, especially one side of the body.  
  • Sudden confusion, trouble speaking, or difficulty understanding speech.  
  • Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes.  
  • Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance, or lack of coordination. 


Later symptoms will depend on the stroke severity and treatment received post-diagnosis, but can include numbness or inability to use a facial feature or limb and continued language issues, confusion or dizzy spells. 


What causes a Stroke? 

Strokes are caused by blocked blood flow to the brain (ischemic stroke) or sudden bleeding in the brain (haemorrhagic stroke).  

High blood pressure is the main risk factor for stroke. The extra force inside your blood vessels can cause small tears, which turn into scar tissue when they heal. Plaque builds up on these scarred areas, leading to blockages and blood clots. 



The sooner medical attention is received, the less damage a stroke will cause. 

Initial treatment is aimed at limiting the size of the stroke and preventing further strokes. First-line treatments commonly include medication and, in some cases, surgery to repair a ruptured blood vessel or remove a clot. 

For more Stroke information and resources to help you make treatment decisions, visit:  


How can ILS help? 

Homecare products to purchase, hire equipment available, and information on supports - 

As a stroke can respond well to treatment such as occupational or physical therapy, consider hiring equipment whilst treatment is taking place: 

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