What happens in the days following a stroke?

The first few hours and days after a stroke, the patient is at great risk of having another stroke. Stroke patients are also very susceptible to serious complications that can include seizures, brain swelling and pneumonia. It will take time to assess how much damage was done by the stroke. Although the brain will begin to adapt and change its way of functioning to accommodate the loss of some of its parts, it can take a long time. The patient, with the assistance of a stroke care team, will begin the recovery process, which will vary depending on the nature and severity of the stroke.

In the days following a stroke people can have complications. Sometimes, when strokes are large, the brain can swell from damage. This is the most severe complication of stroke. Most patients are admitted to the hospital. The goals of admission are to learn why the patient had a stroke, how best to prevent another stroke and to assess for safety need following new neurological deficits, such as swallowing, speaking and walking. Patients often need physical, occupational or speech therapy after stroke.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.