Strokes On The Rise (2016)

Strokes On The Rise Among Younger Adults
February 22, 2016

About 10 percent of all strokes occur in people between 18 and 50 years old, and the risk factors include some that Hodge had: high blood pressure, overweight, off-kilter cholesterol, smoking and diabetes.

Obesity Increases Stroke Risk in Young Adults
Opportunity for Prevention
Walter N. Kernan, MD
Stroke. 2015; 46: 1435-1436


Plain language summary

Thrombolysis for acute ischemic stroke
Database of Systematic Reviews 2014, Issue 7. Art. No.: CD000213

Most strokes are due to blockage of an artery in the brain by a blood clot. Prompt treatment with thrombolytic drugs can restore blood flow before major brain damage has occurred and improve recovery after stroke in some people. Thrombolytic drugs, however, can also cause serious bleeding in the brain, which can be fatal.
One drug, recombinant tissue plasminogen activator (rt-PA), is licensed for use in selected patients within 4.5 hours of stroke in Europe and within three hours in the USA. There is an upper age limit of 80 years in some countries, and a limitation to mainly non-severe stroke in others. Forty per cent more data are available since this review was last updated in 2009.

Authors’ conclusions
Thrombolytic therapy given up to six hours after stroke reduces the proportion of dead or dependent people. Those treated within the first three hours derive substantially more benefit than with later treatment. This overall benefit was apparent despite an increase in symptomatic intracranial hemorrhage, deaths at seven to 10 days, and deaths at final follow-up (except for trials testing rt-PA, which had no effect on death at final follow-up).
Further trials are needed to identify the latest time window, whether people with mild stroke benefit from thrombolysis, to find ways of reducing symptomatic intracranial hemorrhage and deaths, and to identify the environment in which thrombolysis may best be given in routine practice.

Plain language summary: …


an instance of technical jargon:
Unary splits (11:59)

Riddoch’s phenomenon

The Blind Woman Who Sees Rain, But Not Her Daughter’s Smile
May 26, 2014

Imagine a world that is completely black. You can’t see a thing — unless something happens to move. You can see the rain falling from the sky, the steam coming from your coffee cup, a car passing by on the street.

This was the world that Milena Channing claimed to see, back in 2000, shortly after she was blinded by a stroke at 29 years old. But when she told her doctors about these strange apparitions, they looked at her brain scans (the stroke had destroyed basically her entire primary visual cortex, the receiving station of visual information to the brain), and told her she must be hallucinating.

“You’re blind and that’s it,” Channing remembers them saying to her.

Frustrated and convinced these visions were real, Channing made her way from doctor to doctor until she finally found one who believed her: Dr. Gordon Dutton, an ophthalmologist in Glasgow.
He told her he’d once read about such a case — a soldier in World War I who, after a bullet injury to the head, could only see things in motion.

Riddoch’s phenomenon, Dutton told her it was called, named for the Scottish neurologist George Riddoch who named it. And then he prescribed her … a rocking chair!

For Stroke Victims, Jintronix Software …

For Stroke Victims, Jintronix Software Turns Rehab Into a Game
Bloomberg Businessweek. May 08, 2014

the department of physical and rehabilitation medicine at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.
Bunnell’s hospital is among the first in the U.S. to test Jintronix, a subscription-based set of PC games and exercises designed to stimulate recovery using Microsoft’s (MSFT) Kinect, a motion-sensing camera created for use with the company’s Xbox game consoles. The Kinect’s motion tracker allows players to interact with what they see on the screen.

Metal band Motörhead makes your brain bleed

Chronic subdural haematoma secondary to headbanging
The Lancet,  Volume 384, Issue 9937, Page 102, 5 July 2014
Dr Ariyan Pirayesh Islamian MD

A 50-year-old man presented to our neurosurgical department in January, 2013, with a 2 week history of constant worsening headache affecting the whole head. He had no history of head trauma, but reported headbanging at a Motörhead concert 4 weeks previously.
His medical history was unremarkable and he denied substance misuse. Neurological examination and laboratory studies, including coagulation screening, were normal. Cranial CT showed right-sided chronic subdural haematoma with pronounced midl …

My Stroke of Insight

A Brain Scientist With A ‘Stroke Of Insight’
May 14, 2009

Jill Bolte Taylor was in her late 30s when a blood vessel exploded in her brain.

The irony? Taylor is a neurological researcher.

While a stroke typically leaves devastating effects in the body — and oftentimes leads to death — Taylor has made a complete recovery. She says the experience provided unexpected wisdom.

Her bestselling memoir My Stroke of Insight: A Brain Scientist’s Personal Journey will be published in paperback this month.

… to these individuals, you know, I come right back to the – I think most important message of my whole journey is our human brain is resilient. It is designed to heal itself. I firmly believe that.

And you can try to re-teach new cells in order to feel that again and in order to create new function where you have had cells that have been lost.

cited by:
Coursera Understanding the Brain:

More than 50 different kinds of blinks

 ‘Diving Bell’ Celebrates Life of the Mind
November 30, 2007

Jean-Dominique Bauby, the editor of French Elle, was 43 years old when he suffered a massive stroke in 1995.

The stroke left him paralyzed — except for his left eye. That tiny portal became Bauby’s means of communication.

The therapist at his hospital came up with a system. She would read through letters of the alphabet, and Bauby would blink when she came to the letter he wanted — and thus spell out his message.

Bit by excruciating bit — by blinking — Bauby dictated a book about his experience, The Diving Bell and the Butterfly.

“Basically, there’s more than 50 different kinds of blinks.
And until you start making a movie about a guy blinking, you don’t really notice that. You just think the word ‘blink’ means blink.”

“I think you need to go into his world in order to get out of his world.
And he said the only way he could escape his diving bell was through his imagination and his memory.
Those were the only two things that weren’t paralyzed, besides his left eye,” Schnabel says.

“I figured if I told this story, I could actually help somebody else, and I could help myself, because I think it’s extremely optimistic.
I think it’s life-affirming,” Schnabel says.

locked-in syndrome

Your Hand In Mine
by Explosions In The Sky

related news:
Paralyzed UK man dies after losing assisted-suicide case
CNN. August 23, 2012

‘Ghost Boy’ Survives Over A Decade Trapped In His Body
NBC Nightly News


Henry Evans and Chad Jenkins: Meet the robots for humanity

Henry Evans and Chad Jenkins: Meet the robots for humanity
TEDxMidAtlantic. Oct 2013

Paralyzed by a stroke, Henry Evans uses a telepresence robot to take the stage — and show how new robotics, tweaked and personalized by a group called Robots for Humanity, help him live his life.
He shows off a nimble little quadrotor drone, created by a team led by Chad Jenkins, that gives him the ability to navigate space — to once again look around a garden, stroll a campus …

In 2003, Henry Evans became quadriplegic and mute after a stroke-like attack.
Now, working with Robots for Humanity, he’s a pioneer in adaptive robotic tech to help him, and other disabled people like him, navigate the world.