I took an informal survey of friends and family this week – those with parents of the age to consider elder care of some sort. I was trying to understand their knowledge of popular diseases and medical conditions. Specifically, I was trying to determine two things:
- What percentage of them were familiar with common diseases and medical conditions
- What percentage of them actually knew what happens to the body and/or what causes these diseases and conditions
I was not surprised that the vast majority of my participants had basic familiar with a number of common diseases. I was surprised, however, that many were unsure of what actually happens during the course of many medical conditions.
With that in hand, I’d like to introduce a new series of articles called “What’s That?”
Each What’s That? post will provide background information on a disease or medical condition impacting those in assisted living. An illustrated video (courtesy of CareFlash) will accompany the post, providing a multimedia explanation of just what’s happening when a medical condition occurs.
What’s That? How a Stroke Occurs
As with all organs in the body, the brain needs oxygen and nutrients in order to function properly. These life-sustaining products are delivered to the brain via the blood that travels through the circulatory system. A stroke occurs when there is a lack of blood to a portion of the brain, resulting in tissue death and loss of brain function. A stroke can be caused by a ruptured blood vessel, such as an aneurysm, or by an embolism, which is a small free-floating clot or particle that becomes lodged in one of the arteries of the brain and interrupts blood flow. Depending on which area of the brain is affected, a stroke can cause speech impairments, paralysis, unconsciousness, or even death. (Source: CareFlash)