Stands for cerebral autosomal dominant arteriopathy with subcortical infarcts and leukoencephalopathy. It is an illness that makes your blood clot more easily. This can put you at risk of stroke. CADASIL gets worse over time, but blood-thinning medicines can help slow this down. It is an inherited illness so you are more likely to get it if you have a parent who has it.
These are tiny blood vessels. Blood carries oxygen and nutrients your body needs in large blood vessels called arteries. From your arteries, blood flows through your capillaries and out again into veins. Capillaries have very thin walls, which allow your body to absorb the oxygen as it passes through.
A stroke due to a blood clot that has formed in the heart and travelled to the brain.
Relating to the heart and blood vessels.
These are the two large blood vessels at the front of your neck. They carry oxygen-rich blood to your brain. A blockage in a carotid artery is a common cause of stroke. This is more likely if you have a build-up of fatty deposits in your carotid arteries (atherosclerosis).
An operation to clear your carotid arteries of fatty deposits. The surgeon makes a small cut in your neck so that they can clear any blockage. It is only recommended if you have severe blockages, as the operation carries a small risk of stroke.
A small tube which drains fluid from a part of your body. The main reason to have a catheter after stroke is if you have lost control of your bladder (incontinence). Doctors can put the tube into your bladder to drain urine into a small bag.
Central post-stroke pain (CPSP)
This is a rare effect of stroke where you have painful burning, throbbing or shooting feelings although there is nothing present that would normally cause pain. Doctors may call this thalamic pain syndrome because it can be caused by damage to part of your brain called the thalamus. Whilst there is no cure for central post-stroke pain, some medicines can help manage it.
A part of the brain that sits just underneath the back of your brain and on top of the brainstem. If you have a stroke that damages your cerebellum you may have difficulty with your balance or co-ordination.
The outer layer of your brain that is made up of grey-matter (brain cells).
This is another way of describing a haemorrhagic stroke stroke, which is a stroke caused by bleeding from a blood vessel. The bleeding could be inside your brain (called an intracerebral haemorrhage) or over the surface of your brain (called a subarachnoid haemorrhage). About 20 per cent of strokes are cerebral haemorrhages.
The largest part of the brain, which includes the cerebral cortex and other areas just below the surface. Your cerebrum has many grooves and raised areas and looks like it is folded. Parts of your cerebrum are important for movement, vision and higher abilities like thinking, memory and talking.
A fatty substance that is made in your liver and is also in some foods. Your body needs some cholesterol to make things like vitamins and hormones. If you have too much cholesterol, it can collect in your blood vessels and make them narrower. This increases your risk of stroke. Eating healthily and taking medication called statins can lower your cholesterol.
Pain that continues over a long period of time.
Constraint-induced movement therapy (CIT)
There are different types of physiotherapy that can be helpful if you have a weak arm after your stroke. Constraint-induced movement therapy is a kind of physiotherapy where you have a sling or strap on your best arm to encourage you to use your other arm. At the same time, the therapist will work with you on getting your affected arm moving.
Clinical psychologists have quite a varied role. They may provide talking therapy like a counsellor. They also use tests to check if your stroke has affected the way you are thinking and feeling. They are not doctors so they do not prescribe medication.
Most strokes are caused by a blood clot blocking a blood vessel. Clopidogrel is a type of blood-thinning medication that works by stopping your blood sticking together into clots.
Anything that involves ‘thinking’ can be described as a cognitive function. This includes remembering, understanding, making decisions and paying attention to information. Many people have difficulty with cognitive functions after stroke.
CT stands for computerised tomography and is a type of brain scan. It is a type of X-ray that is used to see what is going on inside your brain. It is particularly good at seeing whether a stroke is caused by a blockage or a bleed. It is a quick and painless test. If you have a suspected stroke, you should have a CT scan as soon as possible and within 12 hours.
Communication aid centre (CAC)
If you have difficulty with speech after a stroke, there is a range of equipment that can help you to communicate. Communication aid centres can give you advice on what equipment would be best for you and let you try different products. Your speech and language therapist can refer you to one.
This is your ability to pay attention to something, like a conversation with your partner, without being distracted. Concentration can be more difficult after a stroke.
This is when someone invents stories or information to fill in gaps in their memory. This is different from lying because they do not know that the stories are not true.
Your ability to control your bladder and bowels. After a stroke, you may be unable to control when you go to the toilet. This is called incontinence.
Contractures develop when the muscles in your arm or leg tighten up and cannot be straightened out. Contractures can be painful. They are treated by physiotherapy, a splint or medication.
On the opposite side. For example, a stroke on the left side of your brain is likely to affect the right (contralateral) side of your body.
You might hear doctors talk about CVA, which stands for cerebro-vascular accident. It means exactly the same thing as a stroke. Most people now say stroke instead because it is not really an accident.