It is vitally important for health professionals like Neurologists, to start working with you as soon as possible after your stroke. Having a stroke is a major risk factor for having another and specialist care is about working with you to help reduce that risk. Most patients will have sustained some injury to the brain by the stroke and for many, it will be minor and for others, it will be severe.
Receiving the correct treatment after suffering a stroke is imperative to help reduce the risk of another occurring in the future. So if you’re in need of neurological stroke treatment in Sydney , contact us today to book an initial consultation and let us be a part of your stroke recovery journey.
In many hospitals in New South Wales, neurologists are responsible for the acute care that is often delivered to you as a stroke patient in your first week of care in the hospital. Depending on a number of factors, you may have been suitable for emergency therapies that are administered on arrival.
The main goal is to re-establish blood supply to your brain to limit the amount of irreversible damage caused by your stroke. Patients may either receive one or both of the following treatments, depending on various circumstances.
Clot busting intravenous medication
Otherwise known as IV alteplase, it can be given within 4.5 hours of the first symptoms of an ischemic stroke to break up blood clots.
Endovascular clot retrieval
Otherwise known as intra-arterial thrombectomy, after the doctor has identified the clot through a brain scan (usually CT), the patient is transferred to a procedural room and is often put to sleep with general anaesthesia. A catheter is then inserted into an artery in the leg and guided to the blocked blood vessel in the brain. A wire stent retrieves the blood clot to increase the blood flow to the brain once again.
Once your stroke has occurred, the next step is to try to identify the cause of stroke through various scans and tests. Depending on the results of those initial tests medication is instituted to reduce the risk of another stroke. In many instances, some of those initial tests are scheduled as an outpatient to enable early discharge home if this is appropriate.
For many patients, the period after a stroke can be straightforward and for others, it can be a difficult adjustment period. Post-stroke depression and/or fatigue is extremely common. We understand that having a specialist who is compassionate and also experienced in treating these complications is very important.
Many stroke patients will have some form of physical, speech or cognitive disability in hospital. If the expectation is that the patient will return home, there will usually be a period of rehabilitation where it is suitable.
There are 2 main types of stroke:
Caused by a blood clot that blocks the blood supply to the brain. Blood clots can originate from artery plaque buildup or arise from the heart.
Also known as a haemorrhagic stroke, the rupture of an artery in or around the brain can cause a stroke. When an artery bursts, blood will leak, causing the brain to swell.
There are some factors that are out of your control when it comes to having a stroke:
- Male Gender
- Increased Age
- Family history
- COVID-19 infection
However, there are a number of factors that can be controlled through diagnosis and treatment:
- High blood pressure (the leading cause)
- Cigarette smoking
- High blood cholesterol levels
- Heavy drinking
- Unhealthy diet
- Lack of regular exercise
There are often common symptoms following a stroke and in order to identify if one has occurred, you should use the life-saving FAST test:
Face – Has their mouth drooped? Ask the person to smile and check if it’s uneven. If they stick out their tongue, is it deviated to one side?
Arms – Do they have reduced mobility? Are they able to lift both arms or does one arm drift downward? Is there a sudden loss of coordination or weakness in one or both legs, arms, or hands? Is there a numbness on the arm or leg?
Speech – Do they understand you? Is their speech slurred? Let the person repeat something you say and check to see if they are able to say it quickly. Do they have trouble swallowing? Does their tongue feel thick?
Time – When any of these signs are present, call 000 immediately, as when it comes to stroke treatment, time is a critical factor.
If you or someone you know is showing signs of a stroke, it’s imperative that you seek medical attention immediately. Even if the symptoms have subsided without treatment, this still needs to be discussed with a doctor and referred for specialist care.
Once at the hospital, the patient will be examined by a multidisciplinary team and undergo a CT scan and a series of other tests, to determine the kind of stroke the patient suffered and rule out other possible causes.
Some of the tests might include the following:
The symptoms and disability of a stroke depend on a number of factors, including the location of the obstruction, how much brain tissue is affected, and which part of the brain was affected. Examples of symptoms or disabilities may include:
- Weakness or paralysis on one side or one part of the limbs or face
- Loss of sensation or numbness
- Imbalance or dizziness
- Vision loss
- Inability to produce words
- Slurring of speech
Studies have shown that more than 80 percent of strokes can be prevented. So below are some tips you can start doing today to lower your risk of stroke, regardless of your age, gender, or family history:
- Monitor your blood pressure
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Exercise more frequently
- At most drink moderately
- Quit smoking
- Diagnosis of other medical conditions including; diabetes, high cholesterol and sleep apnoea – your GP will know how to screen for these conditions
The consultation cost will vary depending on the service enquired, appointment duration, medicare availability and other factors. Please use this calculator to get an estimate of your cost on the day of your consultation.
Both Dr Winters and Dr Ang are appointed staff specialist neurologists at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital and are experts in stroke, TIA and related disorders. They are two of only a handful of interventional neurologists that exist in Australia and between them have years of experience diagnosing and treating stroke and other neurovascular disorders.
Why Choose Us
A stroke affects people differently, but our specialists know just how much it can affect your life or that of a loved one. They have a vast amount of experience and expertise, in the diagnosis and treatment of stroke and pride themselves on the excellent care they provide their patients:
Dr Hugh Stephen Winters
MBChB (Auckland) FRACP (Neurology)
Dr. Winters is a fellow of the Royal Australasian College of physicians and a specialist in interventional neurology. He is highly trained in the use of minimally invasive, image-guided techniques to diagnose and treat diseases such as stroke, idiopathic intracranial hypertension, and aneurysms.
Dr Timothy Ang
MBBS, FRACP (Neurology),
Head of Committee for CCINR
Dr. Timothy Ang is a staff specialist neurologist and interventionist at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney. His research interests revolve around streamlining and improving access to hyperacute stroke therapies, using Telestroke tech and retrieval networking. This enables doctors to perform real-time and remote diagnosis and treatment of a stroke patient, which dramatically speeds up the delivery of care.
If you have any more questions regarding our neurological stroke treatment, please don’t hesitate to contact us today. Below are our most frequently asked questions which may also provide you with any additional information you’re looking for:
According to the Brain Foundation, of 100 stroke patients about 30 will die in the first year after their stroke, most (15–20) within the first 30 days. However ischaemic stroke patients have a much higher survival rate than those who suffer a hemorrhagic stroke.
It is important to have rehabilitation after having a stroke to maximise your chance of a full recovery. Most stroke patients are connected with rehabilitation services prior to discharge from hospital care. If further stroke-related rehabilitation is required we can help connect you with the appropriate help.
There is evidence that function can improve even 12 to 18 months after having a stroke so it’s vital to keep up therapy after, in order to maximise the chance of being able to fully regain abilities and carry out your normal daily tasks.