Prof. Dr. A.K. Gupta
BRAIN STROKE & HOMOEOPATHY
The human brain, awesome in its intricacy and power, is still largely a mystery to modern science. With more than 10 million nerve cells it is the home of all that we know and feel, the generator of every physical action and response. Yet, unlike other cells in the body, brain cells once damaged are not good at repairing themselves. And they can be damaged quite easily – by infection, injury, or oxygen starvation. Should any part of the brain go without oxygenated blood for more than a few minutes the affected cells will pack up permanently – the body has suffered a Brain Stroke.
The signs of a stroke vary a great deal, depending on which part of the brain has been damaged, but symptoms range from a sudden loss of speech or movement to dizziness, blurred vision, confusion, and unconsciousness. They may last only a few hours: this is called a Transient Ischemic Attack (T.I.A.). If the symptoms don’t disappear, this is a full-scale stroke.
There are two different kinds of stroke. The most common is an ischemic stroke, caused by a blood clot that blocks a blood vessel or artery in the brain. The other, less common, is a hemorrhagic stroke, caused when a blood vessel in the brain ruptures and spills blood into the surrounding tissue. There are various ways that the flow of blood to the brain can be slowed or stopped. Sometimes a Clot (Thrombosis) forms, blocking the flow of oxygenated blood. Or a blood clot (Embolism) which formed somewhere else in the body breaks free and ends up blocking an artery to the brain. In other cases, blood bursts through the wall of a weak artery into the brain (Haemorrhage), building into a clot.
Luckily, our brain cells have so many connections between them that healthy cells can often take over the function of damaged cells so that we hardly know that anything has gone wrong. Half of stroke survivors return to full health, but much depends on how much damage has been done to the brain, as well as on the aftercare provided.
A cerebral infarction occurs as a result of a blocked artery. The arteries become blocked over the years and this produces slow blood flow to the brain.
Cerebral haemorrhages usually occur as a result of weak arteries or aneurisms in the brain that rupture. High blood pressure is the cause of weak arteries in most cases.
Risk Factors for Brain Stroke
Some stroke risk factors are hereditary. Others are a function of natural processes. Still others result from a person’s lifestyle and diseases e.g. Diabetes, Hypertension, Obesity, Smoking, Alcoholism, Head Injury , Cerebrovascular Accident (CVA ) etc.
- Age — The chances of having a stroke approximately doubles for each decade of life after the age 55. While stroke is common among the elderly
- Heredity (family history) and race — Risk is greater if a parent, grandparent, sister or brother has had a stroke. African Americans have a much higher risk of death from a stroke because blacks have higher risks of high blood pressure, diabetes and obesity.
- Sex (gender) — Brain Stroke is more common in men than in women. In most age groups, more men than women will have a stroke in a given year. However, more than half of total stroke deaths occur in women. At all ages, more women than men die of stroke. Use of birth control pills and pregnancy pose special stroke risks for women.
- Prior stroke, TIA or heart attack — The risk of stroke for someone who has already had one is many times that of a person who has not. Transient ischemic attacks (TIAs) are “warning strokes” that produce stroke-like symptoms but no lasting damage. TIAs are strong predictors of stroke. A person who’s had one or more TIAs is almost 10 times more likely to have a stroke than someone of the same age and sex who hasn’t. Recognizing and treating TIAs can reduce the risk of a major stroke. If you’ve had a heart attack, you’re at higher risk of having a Brain Stroke, too.
Occurs when the blood supply to the brain is stopped. One may have Abrupt loss of Vision, Energy, Coordination, Sensation, Speech. Weaknesses or Paralysis down one side of the body, Loss of Balance. Sudden and Severe Headache.
As brain must be continually supplied with blood through the arteries. If the blood supply stops for some reason, the result is very serious. Disruptions of blood flow to the brain are known as stroke.
There are two types (i) Cerebral Infarction (ii) Cerebral Haemorrhage.
A cerebral infarction occurs when an artery is blocked, halting the flow of blood to the brain. The second basic type of stroke is cerebral haemorrhage which occurs when there is bleeding into the brain. As blood flows into the brain, the build up of pressure results in agonising headache, sometimes followed by loss of consciousness.
Depending on where the brain has been damaged and how badly it has been affected, the patient usually recovers but they may have a physical weakness as a result of the stroke.
There can be Abrupt loss of Vision, Energy, Coordination, Sensation, Speech.
- Numbness, weakness, or paralysis of the face, arm, or leg, typically on one side of the body.
- Trouble seeing in one or both eyes, such as dimness, blurring, double vision, or loss of vision.
- Confusion, trouble understanding.
- Slurred or garbled speech.
- Trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination.
- Severe headache followed rapidly by Loss of Consciousness.
Symptoms vary depending on whether the stroke is caused by a clot or bleeding. The location of the blood clot or bleeding and the extent of brain damage can also affect symptoms.
f you are around it is imperative that you recognize stroke symptoms quickly in order to get the victim the help they need as soon as possible. Brain cells begin to die as soon as a stroke occurs. The faster you get to a doctor, the more likely the stroke sufferer will survive. FAST is an easy acronym to remember and will help you identify symptoms quickly.
F -(Face). Ask the person to smile for you. If one side of the face droops.
A -(Arms). If the person cannot raise both arms, or one arm flops downward, there may have been a stroke.
S -(Speech). If the person cannot repeat a simple phrase, or their voice slurs or sounds strange.
T -(Time). If you see any of the signs listed above, it is an emergency and essential that you see a doctor immediately to avoid long-term effects.
Apart from the clinical symptoms as discussed above ,medical history of the patient certain Laboratory Investigations are also required such as Pathological Blood Test , Biochemistry, CT Scan, MRI Scan, EMG, NCV etc. to confirm the diagnosis of Brain Stroke for the patient
It is vital that you commence regular aerobic exercise – swimming, walking or anything safe and gentle that you feel comfortable with. People at high risk for stroke should not smoke and should eat a low-fat diet and not take contraceptive pills.
Preventable risk factors of stroke
Prevent High blood pressure, High cholesterol, a Sedentary Lifestyle, Obesity, the abuse of stimulant drugs such as amphetamines, smoking, use of birth-control pills, and stress. Certain lifestyle related risk factors can be controlled to reduce the risk of Stroke.
- High blood pressure — High blood pressure is the most important controllable risk factor for Brain Stroke
- Cigarette smoking — In recent years, studies have shown cigarette smoking to be an important risk factor for Brain Stroke. The nicotine and carbon monoxide in cigarette smoke damage the cardiovascular system in many ways.
- Oral Contraceptives – If combined with cigarette smoking greatly increases the risk of Brain Stroke among women.
- Diabetes — Diabetes is an independent risk factor for stroke. Many people with diabetes also have high blood pressure, high blood cholesterol and are overweight. This increases their risk even more. While diabetes is treatable, the presence of the disease still increases your risk of stroke.
Effects of Brain Stroke
Stroke can affect people in different ways. It depends on the type of stroke, the area of the brain affected and the extent of the brain injury. Brain injury from a stroke can affect the senses (such as eyesight, touch, awareness of body positioning), motor activity (movement of arms or legs), speech and the ability to understand speech. It can also affect behavioral and thought patterns, memory and emotions. Paralysis or weakness (the inability to move the arms or legs properly, or at all) on one side of the body is common.
As one side of the brain controls the opposite side of the body, a stroke affecting one side will result in neurological complications on the side of the body if affects. For example, if the stroke occurs in the brain’s right side, the left side of the body (and the right side of the face) will be affected, which could produce any or all of the following:
- Paralysis on the left side of the body
- Vision problems
- Quick, inquisitive behavioral style
- Memory loss
If the stroke occurs in the left side of the brain, the right side of the body (and the left side of the face) will be affected, producing some or all of the following:
- Paralysis on the right side of the body
- Speech/language problems
- Slow, cautious behavioral style
- Memory loss
Patients of stroke should be hospitalised and given the appropriate medication.
Alternative/Natural Treatments :
Alternative treatments can be marvellous adjuncts to conventional treatments with stroke patients. Several techniques can help restore mobility, circulation, and ease other symptoms associated with stroke
Homoeopathy has a very effective role in treating the cases of Stroke and Paralysis. I’ve number of cases treated successfully with Homoeopathy. Physiotherapy as an accessory therapy is also very helpful to be used . Remedies like Aconite, Belladonna, Arnica , Causticum, Natrum Sulf etc. has given wonderful results
Aconite 30x Is a remedy which – by stimulating your adrenal gland- can help the body to repair itself very swiftly. “If this is given early, it could make a major difference to recovery from stroke”, taking it at 10-minute intervals until medical help arrives.
After a stroke a constitutional remedy is usually be prescribed to bolster general health, and beyond that there are many homeopathic remedies – depending on the symptoms – which can support other treatments. Among them are the snake and spider poison remedies which relate to paralysis and bleeding. Agaricus may be helpful in the relief of pain, but, as with all homeopathic remedies, accurate prescription by an experienced professional is very important.
To prevent strokes, your diet should be rich potassium, magnesium, vitamin E, and the essential fatty acids contained in fish oils. Some studies suggest that selenium may also protect against stroke. Fresh fruit and vegetables.
Eat a low fat, salt and cholesterol diet, exercise regularly; keep to your ideal weight; monitoring blood pressure and cholesterol levels; and do not smoke.
Avoid alcohol, caffeine and smoking. Patients with stroke needs careful handling cases may take long time to recover , first 48 to 72 hrs are very crucial which decides the fate of the patient. Awareness regarding the factors predesposing Stroke can minimize the occurrences and if at all it occurs timely treatment can safe gaurd the fatal casualty.
Mrs. Dheer 65 yrs suffered Brain Stroke and was hospitalized . After the discharge from the hospital she was in a vegetative state where she had almost lost her Speech, developed Hemiplegia, Lost control of Urination and Stools. She was declared incurable by the hospital and neurologists and nothing can be done now for her was the only phrase the family members were to hear from everywhere. Then the family was advised to try homoeopathy and that’s how they came to me. After taking her complete case history and analyzing the symptoms I gave the homoeopathic medicine Causticum. With in a weeks time she started showing signs of improvement in the form of started getting feeling and sensation about the Urination, she could make people understand that she was about to urinate. This was the turning point for the family towards hope and faith in homoeopathy. After the continuous treatment of more than 6 months she had improved tremendously when she developed full control over her urination, stools and started making sound of words though which was not fully understandable that time. With other medicines given time to time according to the symptoms and constitution she was fully cured and she visited my clinic on her own feet after a period of 18 Months of treatment with full recovery of all her symptoms and now she could speak also properly. She thanked Homoeopathy for saving her from the misery of vegetative life which she and the family members were compelled to accept as her fate before starting Homoeopathic treatment. Now the Dheer family is a staunch follower of homoeopathy and believe that Homoeopathy Ensures Health Safely and Surely.
Dr.(Prof.) A.K.Gupta, MD(Hom.)
Sr. HOMOEOPATHIC CONSULTANT
Recipient- Bharat Excellence Award, Int. Hahnemann Award of the Millennium
Visiting Prof. B.R.Sur Homoeopathic Medical College & Hospital
Hony. Member Homoeopathic Advisory Committee Govt. of NCT Delhi.
Fonnder Director- AKGsOVIHAMS
Om-Vidya Institute of Homoeopathy & Allied Medical Sciences (Regd.)
Accreditted in Limca Book of Records
Author- The Problem Child and Homoeopathy
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