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A TIA Stroke Can Be Treated at Tampa General Hospital

A TIA stroke isn’t a true stroke. Also known as a transient ischemic attack or mini stroke, this short-term event produces symptoms that resemble those of an ischemic or hemorrhagic stroke. As the name implies, however, a transient attack resolves on its own within a short period of time and causes only temporary problems, rather than long-lasting brain damage that often results from a true stroke. Only a medical professional can distinguish between a TIA and a real stroke, however, so it’s vital that anyone experiencing the signs of a stroke or transient ischemic attack receive emergency medical attention. Common signs of a TIA or stroke include weakness or tingling on one side of the body, sudden loss of balance and/or vision, slurred speech, difficulty comprehending others, and sudden, severe headaches that develop with no specific cause.

Although transient ischemic attacks are not instantly life-threatening the way that strokes are, they are often indicative of a serious underlying problem that needs to be promptly addressed. Whereas true ischemic strokes are caused by the total blockage of an artery supplying the brain with blood, TIAs are brought on by partial obstructions, such as a plaque buildup in the carotid artery. If the underlying issue isn’t resolved, a TIA stroke can be followed by a full stroke. For this reason, physicians at comprehensive stroke centers like Tampa General Hospital may advise patients who have a TIA to take stroke risk reduction measures such as:

  • Taking anti-platelet drugs to stop the blood from forming clots or anti-coagulant drugs that increase the time it takes the blood to clot
  • Having an angioplasty surgery to clear a blocked artery of plaque (as well as potentially having a stent put in place to keep the artery at the proper diameter)
  • Undergoing a carotid endarterectomy to remove a blockage from an obstructed carotid artery

At Tampa General Hospital, we can treat TIAs using the methods mentioned above, and we also have the capabilities to address any sort of ischemic or hemorrhagic stroke. That’s because our interdisciplinary staff of stroke specialists – including critical care physicians, neurologists, neurosurgeons, and others – is present around the clock. TGH also has the advanced imaging technology necessary for diagnosing strokes, determining the source of the obstruction, and assessing the damage done to the brain. From there, we can provide interventional treatments to reduce the risk of a future stroke, including procedures like angioplasty and stent placement.

If you believe that you are experiencing a TIA or stroke, call 9-1-1 immediately and ask to be taken to your nearest comprehensive stroke center.