A transient ischemic attack (TIA) or a mini stroke is temporary blockage of blood flow to the brain. It lasts a few minutes and the symptoms go away within 24 hours and usually doesn’t lead to permanent damage. However, mini stroke shouldn’t be ignored, because they could signal a second stroke in the future so steps can be taken to prevent them from happening.
A mini stroke is more likely to occur in seniors than in younger adults. It’s important to know the symptoms of a mini stroke, and the suitable response if you or an elderly loved one experiences an episode.
Mini Stoke Symptoms
The symptoms of mini strokes and full strokes are very similar, that’s why it’s vital to seek medical attention if the senior is experiencing stroke-like symptoms. The most common symptoms of TIAs are:
- Weakness or numbness on one side of the body
- Slurring of words or difficulty understanding speech
- Severe headache
- Blindness in one or both eyes
It is important to be aware of the risk factors that could increase your loved one’s chances of having mini strokes. These risk factors include:
- Family history of strokes
- High blood pressure
- Cardiovascular disease
- Blood clots
- High cholesterol
The goal of the treatment of a TIA is to prevent a full stroke, the doctor will usually order different diagnostic tests, such as an MRI scan or CT scan to determine the cause of the TIA, location, and severity. and will prescribe the proper medication based on the results. If a senior has a mini stroke that is left untreated, it is possible he or she will experience a major stroke within 3 months.