A stroke happens when the blood flow to the brain is stopped, causing brain cells to die.
Strokes are a medical emergency, as they can lead to permanent damage to parts of the brain, loss of functions such as speech, or cause death.
If you have been told you are at risk of stroke, it’s important to be aware of the main symptoms of stroke.
Transient ischaemic attacks (TIAs or mini-strokes) have the same underlying causes as stroke – an interruption in blood flow to the brain. TIA symptoms are shorter-lived than a stroke, however they can be a warning sign of stroke and need to be treated.
If you are at high risk of a stroke caused by a blood clot (ischaemic stroke), then preventing stroke is important. You may be given an anti-clotting medicine such as warfarin (an anticoagulant) or aspirin (an antiplatelet medicine) to lower your risk of blood clots forming.