Hemorrhagic Stroke: Symptoms, Causes, Treatment

Overview

Hemorrhagic stroke is one type of stroke. It occurs either when a brain aneurysm bursts or a weakened blood vessel leaks blood. In hemorrhagic stroke, chronic hypertension within the brain causes small damage to intracerebral arteries, making blood directly leak into the brain parenchyma.

There are two types of hemorrhagic stroke: intracerebral stroke (bleeding into the brain) and subarachnoid stroke (bleeding around the brain).

Hemorrhagic stroke is responsible for about 40 percent of all stroke deaths. In the U.S., stroke affects roughly 3 percent of the adult population, nearly 7 million individuals. Among them, 15 to 20 percent of people suffer from hemorrhagic strokes.

Causes

The primary cause of a hemorrhagic stroke is the rupture of a weakened blood vessel. This can occur due to the following reasons:

  • High blood pressure
  • Injury
  • Bleeding disorders
  • Cerebral amyloid angiopathy
  • Cocaine use
  • Abnormal blood vessels (AVMs)
  • Ruptured aneurysms
  • Vascular malformations
  • Head trauma
  • Brain tumors
  • Blood thinning medications

Another cause of hemorrhagic stroke is arteriovenous malformation (AVM). In this case, the arteries and veins are connected abnormally without capillaries between them.

Symptoms

Symptoms of hemorrhagic stroke can vary from person to person, but some common symptoms that present immediately after the stroke occurs may include:

  • loss of consciousness
  • nausea and vomiting
  • sudden and severe headaches
  • weakness or numbness in the face, leg, or arm on one side of the body
  • seizures
  • dizziness
  • loss of balance or coordination
  • problems with speech or swallowing
  • confusion or disorientation
  • vision changes
  • speech problems
  • confusion or loss of alertness
  • stiffness or pain in the neck area
  • hand tremors
  • frequent fluctuation in the heartbeat and breathing
  • difficulty swallowing

Diagnosis

The diagnosis of a hemorrhagic stroke is usually based on a thorough medical history and physical exam firstly. During the physical exam, the doctor will look for visible signs and symptoms in the patient.

For more accurate diagnosis, one or more of the following tests may be needed:

  • imaging tests such as a CT scan or an MRI scan.
  • blood tests
  • electroencephalogram (EEG) a test that detects electrical activity in brain using small, metal discs (electrodes) attached to your scalp
  • electroencephalogram (EEG)

This test uses small, metal discs (electrodes) attached to scalp to detect electrical activity in brain. This activity shows up as wavy lines on an EEG recording. One’s brain cells are active all the time, even when he or she is asleep.

  • lumbar puncture (spinal tap)

It is performed in lower back, in the lumbar region. During a lumbar puncture, a needle is inserted between two lumbar bones (vertebrae). A sample of cerebrospinal fluid will be removed.

  • cerebral angiography

This diagnostic test produces a cerebral angiogram, or an image of blockages or other abnormalities in the blood vessels by using X-ray.

Treatment

Immediate ways of treatment of hemorrhagic stroke are aimed at two primary goals: controlling the bleeding and reducing the pressure in the brain. Mostly, the doctor will do the following things:

  • prescribe medicines to counteract the effects of blood thinners
  • do a surgery to repair blood vessel abnormalities caused by this condition
  • design a rehabilitation program that may include speech, physical, and occupational therapy

Keywords: hemorrhage stroke.

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Stroke — Symptoms, Cause, Treatment, Prevention, Home Remedy

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What’s the Survival Rate of Hemorrhagic Stroke?

How Long is the Life Expectancy after Hemorrhagic Stroke?

How Does Hypertension Raise Hemorrhagic Stroke?

Are There Any Guidelines for Hemorrhagic Stroke?

* The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.