What is a Stroke?
A stroke, also know as a Brain Attack, happens when there is a loss of blood supply to a part of the brain. There are two major types of stroke: ischemic and hemorrhagic.
Ischemic strokes can be caused by clogged arteries, a clot forming in an artery that is already narrowed or by a clot breaking off from another place in the body and traveling up to the brain. Hemorrhagic strokes result from blood vessel in the brain bursting and causing blood to leak into the brain.
- High blood pressure
- Family history
- Atrial Fibrillation (A-Fib)
- Heart Disease
- High Cholesterol
- Increasing age, especially after 55
- Unhealthy lifestyle (i.e., smoking obesity, drinking heavily, eating too much fat or salt, taking cocaine or other drugs)
Carotid artery disease is one of the most common causes of stroke. A carotid Duplex is an ultrasound that images the carotid arteries and is a simple accurate test to determine the presence of plaque build-up (atherosclerosis) which can decrease blood flow to the arteries in the brain and cause a stroke. This exam takes approximately 30 minutes.