Are there side effects to the treatments for ischemic stroke?

There are several treatments given to individuals who have had an ischemic stroke (cerebral infarction), but none is without risk. Drugs that break up clots, called thrombolytic medications, increase the risk for bleeding. Blood thinners should not be given for about 24 hours after a thrombolytic medication, and should not be given to individuals with high blood pressure or who have had a hemorrhagic stroke.

Surgery to remove blockage of the artery in the brain is sometimes performed, but this procedure runs the risk of causing another stroke if material is dislodged and forms another blockage.

Therapy with low-dose aspirin is common, but women over the age of 65 may experience a higher risk of gastrointestinal bleeding or a hemorrhage in the brain.

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